The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) today approved a big project to set up a granular urea fertilizer factory at Ghorashal in Polash upazila of Narsingdi district, with an annual production capacity of 9.24 lakh metric tons, involving Taka 10,461 crore in a bid to meet the country’s growing demand for this fertilizer.
The approval came from the 9th ECNEC meeting of the current fiscal year held at the NEC conference room in the capital’s Sher-e-Bangla Nagar area with ECNEC Chairperson and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair.
Briefing the reporters after the meeting, Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal said that a total of 20 projects were approved today involving an overall estimated cost of Taka 32,524.90 crore.
“Of the total project cost, Taka 15,494.37 crore will come from the government of Bangladesh, Taka 11,656.27 crore from the organization’s own fund while the rest Taka 5,374.26 crore from project assistance,” he added.
Among the approved 20 projects, 14 are new while six are revised projects.
The planning minister said the ‘Ghorashal Polash Urea Fertilizer Project’ will be implemented by the Bangladesh Chemical Industries Corporation (BCIC) under the Ministry of Industries by June 2022.
Out of the total estimated fertilizer factory project cost of Taka 10,460.91 crore, Taka 1,844.19 crore will come from the government while the rest Taka 8,616.72 crore will come from bidders financing.
The main project objectives include setting up a new granular urea fertilizer factory at Polash adjacent to the existing Ghorashal Urea Fertilizer Factory Ltd and Polash Urea Fertilizer Factory Ltd under Narsingdi district with a daily production capacity of 2,800 metric tons and annual production capacity of 9,24,000 metric tons.
Besides, the new urea fertilizer factory will also aim at meeting the growing demand of fertilizer to ensure food security in the country side by side ensuring smooth supply of fertilizer to the farmers at an affordable cost.
Once the project is implemented, it will help save foreign currencies through reducing import of fertilizers alongside generating more employment opportunities in the country.
An official at the BCIC told the news agency that the countrywide annual demand of urea fertilizer is in between 26 and 30 lakh metric tons whereas the six fertilizer factories under the BCIC could produce roughly 9-10 lakh metric tons. So, the rest of the deficit (17-20 lakh metric tons) of urea fertilizer is being procured from KAFCO or imported.
Apart from these, most of the machineries of the Ghorashal Urea Fertilizer Factory Ltd and Polash Urea Fertilizer Factory Ltd have become dilapidated for which the daily production capacity of these two existing fertilizer factories has now come down to 1,050 metric tons.
Under the circumstances, the Ministry of Industries proposed the project and thus got ECNEC approval to set up a modern and high-tech urea fertilizer factory there.
The main project operations include setting up a new fertilizer factory with a daily production capacity of 2,800 metric tons, procuring necessary machineries and equipments, necessary land acquisition and setting up rail track for the factory, construction of roads, residential and non-residential buildings, jetty, godown for preserving fertilizer, and setting up customer metering station.
Today’s ECNEC meeting also approved a project for transporting fuel oil from Chattogram to Dhaka through pipeline, involving an overall estimated cost of Taka 2,861.31 crore.
Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC) under the Ministry of Power, Energy and Mineral Resources will implement the project by December 2020.
The Planning Minister said once the project is implemented, it will be possible to transport fuel oil in lesser time and in a cost-efficient way side by side the system loss in fuel oil transportation will reduce.
About the GDP growth, AHM Mustafa Kamal, commonly known as Lotus Kamal, reiterated that the GDP growth may reach around 8.25 percent at the end of the current fiscal year.
Meanwhile, the ECNEC greeted Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for receiving two international awards — the IPS International Achievement Award and the 2018 Special Distinction Award for Leadership — for her humanitarian and responsible policy in hosting the Rohingyas and for her far-sighted leadership over the Rohingya issue.
The other approved projects are Emergency Assistance Project-BREB portion (Electrification for the forcibly displaced Myanmar nationals taking shelter in Cox’s Bazar) with Taka 104.44 crore, Rural connectivity improvement project with Taka 3,667.42 crore, Bangladesh: Emergency Assistance Project (LGED) portion with Taka 297.30 crore, Construction, renovation and development of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Killa with Taka 1,957.49 crore, Ground level heightening, wave protection and embankment protection works of Mithamain army establishment at Mithamain upazila under Kishoreganj district with Taka 304.95 crore, Protecting both embankments of Karnaphuli and Ichamati Rivers, Shilok canal and other canals under Rangunia and Boalkhali upazilas and Kaptai upazilas with Taka 398.91 crore, Protecting the right embankment of Gangachara River under Rangpur district and Teesta river under Rangpur Sadar upazila, 1st revised, with Taka 168.84 crore.
The other projects approved in the meeting are: Cross border road network improvement project (Bangladesh), 1st revised, with Taka 3,684.55 crore, Upgrading Gobindaganj-Ghoraghat-Birampur-Fulbari-Dinajpur (R-585) regional highway to due standard with Taka 882.91 crore, Developing Cox’s Bazar-Teknaf road (N-1) with Taka 458.32 crore, Development and rehabilitation of important and affected roads under Khulna City Corporation with Taka 607.57 crore and Establishment of Fire Service and Civil Defense Station at important 25 (revised 46) upazila Sadars/Places, 2nd revised with Taka 419.37 crore, Establishment of new campus of Jagannath University: land acquisition and development with Taka 1,920.94 crore, Establishment of Shaheed M Mansur Ali Medical College and 500-bed Medical College Hospital, Sirajganj, 1st revised with Taka 883.53 crore, Extending infrastructural facilities of existing 12 existing cadet colleges in the country with Taka 428.54 crore, Rural infrastructures development (Cumilla, Brahmanbaria and Chandpur districts), 2nd revised, with Taka 769.42 crore, Construction of Kodamrasul Bridge over River Shitalakhya near 5 number ghat under Narayanganj City Corporation with Taka 590.75 crore and Flood control, road cum embankment protection and drainage works for Bangladesh Economic Zone at Mirersarai under Chattogram, 1st revised, with Taka 1,657.43 crore.