Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said on Saturday that his country’s first cross-border oil pipeline with India would play a key role in ensuring fuel security in Bangladesh at a time when the world was facing a severe energy crisis due to the Ukraine war.
Hasina said this while inaugurating the 131.5-km Bangladesh-India Friendship Pipeline along with her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi on Saturday.
Describing India as a “true friend” BangladeshHasina said that she wants this friendship to continue.
The Rs 377-crore pipeline is part of energy cooperation between the two neighboring countries, through which Bangladesh will import petroleum, especially diesel, from India.
“When many countries around the world are on the brink of fuel crisis due to Russia-Ukraine war, this pipeline will play an important role in ensuring fuel security of our people,” Hasina said.
“The friendly pipeline is a milestone achievement in cooperation for development between the two friendly countries,” he said. “Apart from ensuring fuel security, the pipeline will spur economic development,” he added.
Hasina said that this pipeline will reduce the time and cost of importing diesel from India. The state-run United News of Bangladesh quoted him as saying, “We have solved all our bilateral problems one by one… We are getting cooperation from India for our development.” “We are importing 1160 MW of power from India. Some more regional and bilateral initiatives in the power sector are being implemented. Our cooperation in this direction will deepen in the days to come,” he said.
“We will work jointly in the national and international arena. Historical and geographical bonds will further strengthen ties between Bangladesh and India,” he said.
Hasina also invited Indian investors to invest in her country. Modi also spoke at the event being attended by his office.
He said the pipeline would open a new chapter in India-Bangladesh relations.
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“This pipeline will help in the rapid development of Bangladesh and will be an excellent example of enhancing connectivity between the two countries,” he said.
The pipeline will run from the marketing terminal of Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL) in Siliguri to the Parbatipur depot of Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC).
As per the deal, India will send 200,000 tonnes of oil annually in the first three years, 300,000 tonnes annually in the next three years, 500,000 tonnes annually in the next four years and one million tonnes annually after that, bdnews24.com reported.
Minister of State for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid had earlier said that the pipeline with India would reduce the transportation cost of fuel oil to Bangladesh by 50 percent.
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