Originally posted in The Business Standard on 18 February 2022
The unused power from FloSolar Solutions’ plants would be supplied to the national grid
FloSolar Solutions Ltd, a local renewable energy firm, has entered into a 20-year private power purchase agreement (PPA) with Quality Feeds Group concerns Quality Breeders Ltd and Quality Integrated Agro Ltd on Thursday.
Quality Breeders, which produces high quality day-old chickens, has two facilities in Bogura and Gazipur, while Quality Integrated Agro has its poultry processing plant in Habiganj.
Under the PPA, FloSolar would build, own and operate rooftop solar power systems to provide electricity to the two factories for the next two decades.
Under the net metering system Bangladesh adopted a few years ago, the unused power produced by the solar power systems would be supplied to the national grid, while any shortage would be covered by the national grid, said the FloSolar officials.
“The green power project financed by IDLC Finance Ltd will have a power generation capacity of 656 KW and the factories would be charged less than the off-peak grid tariff, thanks to net metering policy that enabled Bangladeshi industries to have a strong ground to choose renewable energy,” said FloSolar Managing Director Mustafa Azim Kasem Khan.
In the agreement signing ceremony held at a city hotel, he anticipated that within a few years the country might increase its solar power capacity by ten times to over 5,000 MW.
Currently, Bangladesh has a solar power capacity of over 500 units, most of which is from the home solar power systems across the country.
Seven solar plants, with a total capacity of 131 MW, are currently supplying power to the national grid while some bigger ones are in the pipeline.
Following the net metering policy enactment in 2018, over 1,500 industrial rooftop solar plants with a capacity of over 36 MW have been set up in the country to strengthen the green journey.
FloSolar is a concern of FloWater Solutions Ltd which has successfully executed over 150 projects, such as drinking water plants, and efficient wastewater management systems, across Bangladesh.
FloWater is the local partner of French green innovation giant Veolia’s water solutions wing Veolia Water Technologies and Dutch green investor Climate Fund Managers.
FloSolar, which began its journey in 2020, has plans to set up industrial rooftop solar plants with a total capacity of 5 MW by June, 20 MW by December this year and 300 MW by 2030, according to its managing director.
To harness the full potential of the sustainable power solution in Bangladesh, the government should further ease the process of importing solar technology products, he said.
“Considering the benefits of solar, there should be a more generous duty structure for the imports of solar power system products,” said Mustafa Azim Kasem Khan.
Competent companies like FloSolar are fully capable of setting up solar power systems in the country if the government gives them a hand, he opined.
For example, right now the companies are compelled to import everything needed for a solar plant from a single country to avail the duty benefits while to be a manufacturer they will need to import different components and materials from different countries with better incentives.