July 24 2002 – Global power generator maker Alstom has struck a 600 million taka ($10.36 million) deal to set up power plants with a total capacity of 15.4 MW for a Bangladeshi private company.

“We have placed a 600 million taka order for setting up two power generating units of 7.7 MW capacity each to ensure uninterrupted power supply to our steel mills,” Mohammad Mohsin, Managing Director of PHP Steel Mills Ltd told Reuters on Tuesday.

PHP Steel Mills is one of the leading manufacturers of corrugated iron sheets in Bangladesh, making 300 000 t annually. The company is one of several in Bangladesh switching to private sourcing for its power needs rather than relying on power from the government monopoly.

The country is facing nagging power shortages. Power officials have estimated it would need to invest $2.42 billion over the next five years in the power sector to meet growing demand for electricity.

Only 30 per cent of Bangladesh’s 130 million people have electricity.

Mohsin said the gas-fired power plants were expected to be commissioned at the mill area at Sitakunda, about 265 km (166 miles) southeast of capital Dhaka in September this year.