Saturday, April 21, 2018

World Bank to lend Bangladesh $515 million for two projects

  • News Desk, bdnews24.com
    Published: 2018-04-10 18:11:54 BdST

bdnews24

The World Bank will lend $515 million to Bangladesh for two projects to help expand electricity transmission network and improve insurance coverage.

The agreement signing ceremony between Bangladesh and the bank was held in this regard in Dhaka, said the bank in a statement on Tuesday.

The $450 million project titled Enhancement and Strengthening of Power Transmission Network in Eastern Region aims to improve reliable electricity supply and reduce load shedding in the eastern region, covering greater Cumilla, Noakhali and parts of greater Chattogram.

About 275,000 households and 16,000 agricultural consumers will get new electricity connection.

The project will build 13 new substations and rehabilitate an existing one in the country’s eastern part. These will also help integrate renewable energy and new generations into the grid. The project will build one 230 kV transmission line through greater Cumilla and four short distance 132 kV lines in Cumilla and Noakhali areas.

“In recent years, the government has significantly increased power generation. But, only investing in power generation is not sufficient, unless that is supported by improvement in transmission and distribution,” said Qimiao Fan, WB country director for Bangladesh, Bhutan, and Nepal.

“By supplying uninterrupted power to Mirsarai Economic Zone, port, airport or other key economic facilities, the project will help unlock private sector growth.”

The $65 million project "Insurance Sector Development Project" will help strengthen the regulatory and supervisory capacity of the Insurance Development and Regulatory Authority, and the country’s two state-owned insurance corporations—Shadharan Bima Corporation and Jiban Bima Corporation—through modernising their systems and business practices.

“Insurance helps people, especially the poor, and businesses to protect themselves from shocks. But, in Bangladesh, insurance penetration is particularly low: less than 1 percent of the population has insurance coverage. This project will help individuals, families, and businesses increase insurance coverage” added Qimiao Fan.