The newly built 130-km Bangladesh-India Friendship Pipeline for carrying diesel or petroleum is ready for inauguration. According to official sources, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her Indian counterpart Prime Minister Narendra Modi are scheduled to formally inaugurate the 131.57-km cross-border pipeline through video conferencing on March 18. Named 'Indo-Bangla Friendship Pipeline', some 126.57-km of the pipeline lies in Bangladesh while the remaining 5-km was installed in India. “All the necessary works of the pipeline project were completed and it’s now ready for inauguration,” ABM Azad, chairman of Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC), told UNB. The BPC, the state marketing agency of petroleum fuel under the Energy and Mineral Resources Division, has been implementing the project under a 15-year government’s deal with India to annually import 250,000 tonnes to 400,000 tonnes of diesel from the neighbouring country through the cross-border pipeline. Also Read: India-Bangladesh ‘friendship’ pipeline in Dinajpur to ensure energy security: Nasrul Hamid The deal signed was on the basis of an unsolicited offer in 2017 following the approval of the Cabinet Economic Affairs Committee on August 23. Bangladesh annually needs to import 6.6 million MT-7.7 million MT of petroleum to meet its demand. According to official documents seen by UNB, the whole consignment of petroleum will come through the cross-border pipeline from India's Numaligarh refinery, located in Golaghat in north-eastern Indian state of Assam, while Bangladesh will receive it at Parbatipur petroleum fuel depot in north-western district of Dinajpur. Official sources said though most part of the proposed pipeline is to be laid in the Bangladesh part, the Indian government has provided about Rs 303 crore as a loan under Indian line of credit (LOC) to build the Bangladesh portion. Bangladesh will operate the pipeline in its part while India will operate the pipeline in its portion. Officials said Dhaka had to first sign a 'Sales & Purchase Agreement' (SPA) to receive New Delhi’s financial support as a pre-condition. The documents show that the 'premium' or transportation cost of the petroleum was fixed at $5.5 per barrel of diesel and the price of petroleum will be fixed on the basis of price on the international oil market. The officials said when such a deal was signed Bangladesh was spending $4.4 per barrel to import diesel from overseas through vessels. The documents also reveal that Bangladesh will annually import 250,000 metric tonnes in the first three years, 300,000 mt annually in the 4th to 6th years, 350,000 mt annually in the 7th to 10th years and 400,000 mt annually from the 11th to 15th years. Currently, Bangladesh has been importing 22,000 MT of diesel per month through railway wagons. BPC chairman ABM Azad said Bangladesh will benefit from such a pipeline in multiple ways and the deal could be extended for a further period of time. He said the premium is cheaper compared with import cost from overseas as Bangladesh has to spend $12 per barrel as premium to import diesel. He said that such petroleum imports from India through cross-border pipelines will help create a stock of petroleum in the northern region to meet the growing demands in that part of the country. Recently, State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid visited the pipeline project and appreciated the officials for completing it ahead of schedule. He said this pipeline will help increase fuel supply by 29,000 MT in the 16 districts of the country’s northern region.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will inaugurate 30 projects and lay the foundation stones of four others in Chattogram on Sunday. The Prime Minister will inaugurate and lay foundation stones of the projects alongside joining a rally organised by Awami League’s Chattogram North and South district units at the historical Railway Polo Ground in the city. Earlier on March 28, 2012, PM Hasina had delivered a speech as the chief guest at a grand rally of the 14-party alliance at the same venue, which means she is returning to address a rally once again after 10 years. Read: PM to inaugurate, lay foundation stone of 50 industries and infrastructures tomorrow Abdullah Al Mamun, Assistant Commissioner of Chattogram District Administration and an Executive Magistrate, confirmed the matter. The 30 projects to be inaugurated include many newly built academic buildings of educational institutions, while the four projects the foundation stones of which will be laid are-construction of jetties and necessary infrastructures in Sandwip and Mirsarai, modernisation of Bangladesh Marine Academy in Anwara, construction of a United Nations Green Field with modern amenities at Panchlaish residential area of Chattogram city and construction of a building for Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC).
Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen on Saturday inaugurated the upgrading of the 12km Kumargaon-Badaghat-Airport road into four lanes to ease traffic jams and make commuting easier in Sylhet city. The project would reduce traffic congestion and establish road connectivity between Sunamganj, Moulvibazar, Habiganj, and Osmani International Airport once it is implemented. Also, traffic bottlenecks in the city would be reduced by constructing alternative roads for trucks and other heavy vehicles plying from Bholaganj to Sylhet. Read: Dhaka, Tokyo ties to be deepened through PM's visit: FM In a video message, the minister said the two-lane road needed to be expanded into four lanes due to heavy traffic movement. "Those living in Ambarkhana, Subidbazar, and Choukidighi areas have to face a lot of trouble due to the movement of trucks carrying stones on the road." "The project will cost around Tk728 crore and end by June 2024. Also, 24 culverts and four bridges will be built to prevent waterlogging on the road during the monsoon," he added.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday will inaugurate and lay the foundation stone of 50 industries and infrastructures. She will formally inaugurate the Karnaphuli Drydock Special Economic Zone, connecting virtually from her official residence Ganabhaban. Bangladesh Economic Zone Authority (BEZA) will hold the programme on the occasion of the golden jubilee of country’s independence. BEZA Executive Chairman Sheikh Yusuf Haroon will deliver the welcome speech, according to a press release from Karnaphuli Drydock Special Economic Zone. A video documentary on the activities of the Bangladesh Economic Zone Authority will be screened at the programme. Read: PM invites Singapore investors to special economic zones, emphasises agro-processing Karnaphuli Drydock Special Economic Zone is in Badalpura and Shah Mirpur mauza, at the south of Karnaphuli river. It was established in March last year by one of the largest companies of the country, Karnaphuli Ship Builders Ltd., taking land from BEZA. The World Bank has provided a soft loan of Tk 800 crore for the drydock construction cost. This drydock is 285 meters long and 56 meters wide with a draft of 14 metres. It is possible to build and repair ships weighing 100,000 tons at the dock. Construction of another drydock at a cost of Tk 1200 crore is also in progress now. Construction of two jetties under Karnaphuli Drydock Special Economic Zone at Anwara on the south bank of Karnaphuli river has already been completed. Import cargo ships have started arriving at the jetty and loading-unloading activities are going on regularly. This is playing a helpful role in reducing congestion and productivity of cargo ships of Chittagong port. Foreign currency is being saved due to reduction in wait time of ships, especially at outer anchorage. Under the said economic zone, 20.98 acres of land will be taken lease by BEZA for the construction of two more jetties and container terminals, and two more jetties will be constructed on Karnaphuli Ship Builders' own land. The project inauguration and foundation stone laying will be held simultaneously from a total of 8 venues. Read: Expedite implementation of Kuwait’s proposed petroleum refinery in Bangladesh: PM The venues are: Ganabhaban, Dhaka; Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Shilpa Nagar in Mirsrai, Chattogram; Srihatta Economic Zone in MoulviBazar; Karnaphuli Drydock SEZ in Anwara, Chattogram; Meghna Industrial Economic Zone in Sonargaon, Narayanganj; Jamalpur Economic Zone in Jamalpur Sadar; Sabrang Tourism Park in Cox's Bazar; and Hossaindi Economic Zone in Gazaria, Munshiganj. The event will conclude with an exchange of views with investors of the last economic zone. Karnaphuli Ship Builders Ltd. has already built 1200 ships and boats, repaired about 800 ships and built 50 dredgers and handed them over to the government.
The inaugural program of the Bangabandhu 7th President Cup Fencing Championship was held on Tuesday at Shaheed Suhrawardy Indoor Stadium, Mirpur 10, Dhaka. Liberation War Affairs Minister AKM Mozammel Haque inaugurated the tournament as the chief guest. It was presided over by Bangladesh Fencing Federation (BFF) President Shoeb Chowdhury. The program was anchored by Bangladesh Fencing Federation Joint General Secretary Rezaur Rahman Sinha. Shoeb Chowdhury paid tribute to Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. “Bangladeshi fencers have retained their spirit and rhythm despite the turbulent time the world is going through at this moment because of the Russia-Ukraine War,” he said. Read more: FM inaugurates Bangabandhu Gold Cup football tournament in Sylhet Shoeb Chowdhury applauded Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for supporting the expansion of sports across Bangladesh. He also thanked State Minister for Youth and Sports Zahid Ahsan Russell for upgrading Bangladesh Fencing Association to Bangladesh Fencing Federation. Bangabandhu Chair and Bangladesh Bank’s former Governor Dr. Atiur Rahman gave the keynote speech at the event. He assured his listeners that Bangladesh’s economy stands on a firm foothold and urged everyone not to trust rumours. Special Guest Lt. General (Retd) Sheikh Mamun Khaled said that leadership is a vital thing. Bangabandhu’s unflinching leadership freed Bangladesh from Pakistan, he stated. Read more: Bangabandhu Gold Cup: Bangladesh off to good start, beat Laos 1-0 BFF General Secretary Selim Omrao Khan gave the welcome speech. BFF Vice President Mohiuddin Ahmed and Vice President Abdul Mabud PPM also spoke on the occasion.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will inaugurate the commercial operations of 14 industrial units and lay the foundation stones for the infrastructures development of 29 more factories inside the economic zones on Wednesday. Executive Chairman of the Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority (BEZA) Shaikh Yusuf Harun informed this while addressing a view-exchange meeting organized jointly by the BEZA and the Economic Reporters Forum (ERF) on Sunday. Among them, commercial operations of four industries at the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Shilpa Nagar (BSMSN) will open for commercial operation. These are Asian Paints of India, Nippon of Japan, McDonald of Bangladesh, and TK Group’s associate Samuda Construction Limited. The BSMSN was constructed over an area of 30,000 acres of land in Mirsarai and Sitakunda Upazilas of Chattogram and Sonagazi upazila of Feni. The factory of Double Glazing would also be inaugurated at Srihotto Economic Zone on the day. Besides, the commercial operation of some nine industrial units in the private Economic Zones would also be inaugurated. Among them the country’s biggest PVC factory. Read: EPZs saw all-time high export, investment, job growth in FY22: Bepza In order to go into commercial operation, some $967.73 million has already been invested in some 14 factories while the concerned industry owners informed that they have plans to invest $331.27 million more in those factories. Harun informed that the Prime Minister will lay the foundation stones of some 29 factories which have already attracted an investment of $610 million, while $1.9 billion more would be invested in those factories. These industries have already created employment opportunities for some 6,407 people, while another 38,658 jobs would be created in those factories. The Project Director of the BSMSN Abdullah Al Mahmud Faruk made a Powerpoint presentation on the overall operations and progress of its activities in the function. Presided over by ERF President Sharmeen Rinvy, BEZA General Manager (Administration) Hasan Arif, and other high officials were present among others. ERF general secretary SM Rashidul Islam moderated the view-exchange meeting.
Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan on Thursday inaugurated the Viewer’s Gallery of BGB-BSF Joint Retreat Parade in Panchagarh’s Banglabandha Zero Point. During the inauguration, the Minister planted a tree on the gallery premises. Later, he witnessed a joint parade of Bangladesh’s BGB and India’s BSF administered by BGB’s Panchagarh Battalion (18 BGB). The parade was an effort to bolster friendly relations and brotherhood between the people and increase trust between the border forces of the two countries. Read: Militants’ involvement with CHT’s KNF group being investigated: Home Minister After the parade, Asaduzzaman thanked BGB and BSF personnel for their efforts, distributed sweetmeat among them and took part in a photo session. Welcome gifts were also exchanged between BGB and BSF members during the event.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Monday inaugurated the third Shitalakhya Bridge in Narayanganj, aiming to ease traffic movement between Chattogram and the southwestern districts via Padma Bridge. She opened the bridge for public through a video conference from her office. The Bridge is named after valiant freedom fighter AKM Nasim Osman. It will connect Narayanganj city with Bandar upazila, which would help boost local economy. The 1.29-kilometer bridge will enable Chattogram region-bound vehicles from southwestern region and vice-versa to bypass Narayanganj city to avoid traffic congestion and save times. The bridge will connect Madanganaj of Bandar upazila to the east with Syedpur of Narayanganj Sadar upazila to the west. At present, engine boats are key communication mode for the people of both sides of the river and other areas to cross it. Now vehicles from the southwestern region use Jatrabari route in Dhaka via Postogola Bridge to go to Chattogram region or use Chashara and Signboard route to reach their destinations. Read: PM opens Bangladesh’s first 6-lane bridge over Madhumati river The vehicles will not have to face severe traffic congestion in Panchabati BSCIC industrial area, Panchabati intersection, Chashara intersection, Singboard, Chattogram road in Narayanganj or Postogola and Shanir Akhra route in Dhaka. The vehicles will be able to bypass capital as well as Narayanganj city, which will result in less pressure on the capital and Narayanganj. The project was approved in 2010 in ECNEC while construction work started on January 28 in 2018. The bridge construction was estimated at a cost of Tk 608.56 crore as Tk 263.36 crore came from Bangladesh government fund and Tk 345.20 crore from the Saudi Fund for Development (SFD). The bridge with walkways has 38 spans - five in river and 33 in the east and west ends. The width of the bridge along with walkways is 22.15 meters. The Shitalakhya River separates the Bandar Upazila and Sonargoan Upazila from the district headquarters. These two Upazilas in Narayanganj are not directly connected to the district headquarters by road. Kanchpur Bridge (Shitalakhya-1 Bridge) has to be used to go the district headquarters from the two upazilas, which requires nearly 30 km of travelling by road to cross just 3 to 5 kilometers of distance through the river by boat.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Monday inaugurated the Kalna Bridge, the country’s first six-lane bridge, aiming at bridging the Madhumati River in Narail. She opened the bridge, also known as Madhumati Bridge, via video conference from her office. Residents of Gopalganj, Narail, Jashore, Benapole, Satkhira and north-western districts in the country will be benefited by this bridge, which is a Nielsen-Lohse Arch type bridge. Nielsen-Lohse bridges are tied-arch bridges in which braced cables cross each other and are connected by intersection clamps. The length of the bridge, which is part of the Asian Highway Network, is 690 meters and the width is 27.1 meters. The six-lane connecting road on both sides is about four and a half kilometers. The total cost of construction of the bridge is about Tk 960 crore, which has been funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) under the Cross Border Road Network Improvement Project of the Department of Roads and Highways. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina laid the foundation stone of Kalna Bridge in January 2015. Toll rates fixed The Madhumati Bridge authority has already fixed the toll rates to be paid to cross the bridge by different vehicles. Large trailers will need to pay Tk 565, trucks with three or four axles Tk 450, medium-sized trucks with two axles Tk 225 and small trucks Tk 170. Read: Country’s first 6-lane bridge to open tomorrow over Madhumati Meanwhile, large buses will have to pay Tk 205, minibuses or coasters Tk 115, microbuses, pick up vans, converted jeeps and wreckers Tk 80, and private cars Tk 55. Autorickshaw, three-wheelers, battery and CNG-driven autorickshaws will pay Tk 25, motorcycles Tk 10, and finally paddled vans, rickshaws, or bicycles will pay Tk 5 as toll to cross the bridge. The toll will be collected manually first. Later toll will be collected digitally through the operator. Connecting the gaps The distance from Kalnaghat to Dhaka is only 108-km. With the Kalna Bridge opening, the commute between Dhaka and the surrounding areas including Narail, Benapole, Jessore, and Khulna will be reduced by 100-km, to 200-km in some places. The bridge is part of the Asian Highway Network. In terms of road communication, it will play a direct role in connecting roads through Sylhet's Tamabil to Dhaka, Bhanga, Narail, Jessore, Benapole, and Kolkata. The Madhumati River was lying between the Kalna Point and those routes, and not it has been bridged. The bridge will impact both national and international connectivity and act as a milestone linking India’s Assam and West Bengal to Bangladesh’s Bhomra Land Port in Satkhira, Benapole and Noapara maritime port. With the launch of EPZ (Export Processing Zone) at Lohagara in Narail, expansion of business and massive employment will be created. For the people of Narail, Jessore, Benapole, Noapara Shilpanagar, Bhomra land port of Satkhira and some surrounding districts, the Kalna Bridge is expected to be a greater boon than even the Padma Bridge. Vehicles had to wait long periods to cross the Madhumati River by ferry from the Kalnaghat point.
Yes, you have to shell out some money for a smooth drive on the country’s first six-lane Kalna Bridge over the Madhumati river. Bangladesh bridges authorities have rolled out toll rates for the bridge -- a private car travelling on it will have to pay Tk 55 as fee. A biker, on the other hand, will have to pay Tk 10 for a one-way journey, while Tk 5 has been fixed as toll for rickshaws and cycles. Read: PM opens Bangamata Bridge over Kacha River in Pirojpur Similarly, Tk 565 has been fixed as toll fee for big trailers, Tk 450 for three-axle trucks, Tk 225 for two-axle trucks, Tk 170 for small trucks, Tk 135 for power tillers and tractors. Buses, of course the big ones, will have to shell out Tk 205 for a one-way journey. A microbus, a pickup van and an SUV will be charged Tk 90 as toll. Similarly, Tk 25 has been fixed as toll for three-wheelers of all make.