Government revises decision: CNG stations will be closed for four hours

The government has decided to close CNG filling stations across the country for four hours from 6pm daily instead of the previously announced six hours.

The power, energy and mineral resources ministry announced the revised timing, starting from Sept 19, in a notice on Wednesday after owners of the stations objected to the previous plan.

The ministry on Monday announced the decision to close filling stations for six hours in order to increase gas supply to power plants during peak hours. But it later suspended the decision in the face of the owners’ objections.

Farhan Noor, secretary of CNG Filling Station Owners Association, said they demanded the stations be closed for three hours. “Now the government has approved a four-hour closure.”

Bangladesh currently has 654 CNG filling stations, which are open 24 hours a day.

But growing demand has led to a significant shortage of natural gas across the country.

According to the government notice, a meeting on Jul 19 decided on the six-hour shutdown of CNG stations while short, medium and long-term plans were formulated to meet the demand of gas-based power plants across the county.

Petrobangla had previously said that gas shortages are hampering efforts to supply power plants.

According to the national oil and gas company’s estimates, it could only supply 1,087 million cubic feet of gas to power plants on Monday, which was only 41 percent of the 2,252 million cubic feet in demand.

Bangladesh is importing gas and also exploring and extracting gas domestically in order to solve the ongoing crisis, State Minister of Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid told the media on Monday.