Petrobangla is a state-owned company established for exploration, development, transportation, distribution and marketing of oil, gas and mineral resources in Bangladesh. The Bangladesh Mineral Oil and Gas Corporation (BOGMC) was created through the Presidential Order No 27 on 26 March 1972 for exploration of oil, gas and mineral resources in the country. A separate organization called ‘Bangladesh Mineral Exploration and Development Corporation (BMEDC)’ was created on 27 September 1972 through the Presidential Order No. 120. After segregation of the exploration and development activities of mineral resources, BOGMC was reconstituted as Bangladesh Oil and Gas Corporation (BOGC) with short name as Petrobangla through the Ordinance No. 15 of 22 August 1974. In 13 November, 1976, through the Ordinance No. 88, the importation, refining and marketing of crude and petroleum products were separated and vested with the Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC). BOGC and BMEDC were merged into a single entity called Bangladesh Oil, Gas and Minerals Corporation (BOGMC) by the Ordinance of the government No. 21 of 11 April 1985. Under a separate Government Order of 28 February 1989, the corporation was short named as Petrobangla and was given the authority to deal with oil, gas and mineral exploration and their development, extraction, transportation, distribution and marketing related activities.

It has the mandate to enter into Production Sharing Contracts (PSC) with International Oil Companies (IOCs) and supervise all activities for exploration, development and production of oil and gas under the signed PSCs.

Currently Petrobangla performs its duties and responsibilities through its 13 (thirteen) subsidiary companies. The companies are :Bangladesh Petroleum Exploration Company Limited (BAPEX), Bangladesh Gas Fields Company Limited (BGFCL), Sylhet Gas Fields Limited (SGFL), Gas Transmission Company Limited (GTCL), Titas Gas Transmission and Distribution Company Limited (TGDCL), Jalalabad Gas Transmission and Distribution Systems Limited (JGTDSL), Bakhrabad Gas Systems Limited (BGSL), Pashchimanchal Gas Company Limited (PGCL), Karnaphuli Gas Distribution Company Limited (KGDCL), Sundarban Gas Company Limited (SGCL), Rupantarita Prakritic Gas Company Limited (RPGCL), Barapukuria Coal Mining Company (BCMCL) and Maddhyapara Granite Mining Company (MGMCL).

Bangladesh Petrolum Exploration Company Limited (BAPEX) was established as a state owned company in 1989 abolishing the erstwhile exploration directorate of Petrobangla with the objectives to accelerate oil and gas exploration in the country.

Since its establishment, BAPEX has been carrying out exploration works in search of oil and gas in the country. BAPEX has discovered 8 gas fields and supply approximately 120 mmscfd gas to the national grid from its producing 7 gas fields (Saldanadi, Fenchuganj, Shahbazpur, Semutang, Sundalpur, Begumganj and Srikail). In 2000, BAPEX was given permission to perform as an exploration and production company for oil and gas resources. A total of 42.3 billion cubic feet (BCF) gas has been produced by BAPEX from its fields in the fiscal year 2018-19 and sold the gas to different gas distribution and marketing companies of Petrobangla. In addition, BAPEX has produced about 40,157 barrels of condensate as byproduct of natural gas during the same period and sold the same to BGFCL, SGFL and BPC.

Government has awarded BAPEX with 10 percent carried over interests for PSCs for the shallow offshore blocks SS-4, SS-9 and SS-11 blocks for the signed PSC in 2021 with ONGC Videsh Ltd., Oil India Ltd. and Santos Ltd. and Kris Energy Bangladesh Ltd (for Sangu Field) respectively. In addition, BAPEX, has 10% carried over interests in the signed PSC for block-9 with Tullow Bangladesh and Niko Resources Limited and it monitors the operations of Bangura gas field located at block-9 within the scope of PSC.

Bangladesh Gas Fields Company Limited (BGFCL) is the major state owned gas producing company in the country. The Pakistan Shell Oil Company, founded in 1956 in Karachi was renamed as Bangladesh Shell Oil Company (BSOC) continued its operations as owner of the major gas fields in the country. Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman brought under state ownership five major gas fields namely Rashidpur, Kailashtila, Titas, Habiganj and Bakhrabad from the Shell Oil Company Limited (PSOC) on 9 August 1975 by purchasing them. Bangladesh Gas Fields Company Limited founded on 12 September 1975 and was awarded with the ownership and responsibilities of the said 5 gas fields for their operation and management. Kamta, Narshingdi and Meghna gas fields were placed for operation under BGFCL in 1985 and in 1992 respectively. BGFCL has been continuing gas production from five gas fields (Titas, Habiganj, Bakhrabad, Narshingdi and Meghna). An approximate 287.70 BCF of gas and 186, 576 barrels of condensate (extracted as by-product from the gas), were produced by the company during 2018-19 FY. BGFCL supplied its produced gas to TGTDCL, BGDCL, KGDCL, JGTDSL, PGCL and SGCL through transmission networks under GTCL and TGTDCL. Besides, petrol and diesel produced from condensate are being supplied to the oil marketing companies of BPC.

Sylhet Gas Fields Company Limited (SGFL) a state owned company which is the successor of the Burma Oil Company (BOC). The company was abandoned by BOC after the liberation of Bangladesh and was taken over by the government in 1972 and later named as Sylhet Gas Fields Limited (SGFCL). All the assets and production and distribution facilities of Chatak gas field belonging to the Pakistan Petroleum Ltd. during pre-independence period was taken over by the Bangladesh Government after independence and vested to SGFCL. Presently SGFCL has been producing gas and condensate from Haripur (Sylhet), Kailashtila, Rashidpur and Beanibazar gas fields. Production from Chhatak and Haripur gas fields are presently suspended. Haripur oil field continued oil production from December 1986 to July 1995 and currently remains suspended.

During the FY 2018-19, SGFCL produced 46.22 BCF of gas, 272,668.91 barrels of condensate and 171,729.56 barrels of natural gas liquids (NGL) from its own fields. The produced gas has been supplied to JGTDSL, BGDCL, PGCL and KGDCL networks.

Gas Transmission Company Limited (GTCL) was formed as state owned company to eventually operate all the high-pressure transmission gas pipelines of the country for a centralized operation in June 24, 1993. The company started its operation with the North-South 188-kilometer long with 24 inches diameter gas pipeline stretching from Kailashtila gas field to Ashuganj, which was built by Petrobangla earlier. In addition, a six inches diameter and 187-kilometer-long pipeline for transmission of condensate was also transferred to GTCL. Later the company implemented the construction of 59 kilometer long with 30 inches diameter Ashuganj-Bakhrabad gas pipeline project. During the FY 2018-19, GTCL transmitted in total 874.96 BCF of gas, to TGTDCL, BGDCL, KGDCL, JGTDSL, PGCL and SGCL networks. The Company transported a total of 15,69,874 barrels of condensate through its 175 km long north-south condensate pipeline during the same year.

For evacuating imported re-gasified LNG, GTCL has constructed 91 km long gas transmission pipeline from Moheshkhali to Anowara, Chattogram with 30 inches diameter and 30 km long gas transmission pipeline from Anowara to Fouzdarhat with 42 inches diameter. GTCL currently has been implementing several gas pipelines of different diameters and lengths to improve gas transmission and expansion of the national gas grid.

Titas Gas Transmission and Distribution Company Limited (TGTDCL) the gas marketing company in the country with a wide network of transmission and distribution pipelines. The company started its operation in 20 November 1964. TGTDCL started supplying gas to Siddhirganj Power Station from April 1968 and that was the beginning of the company’s commercial operation. TGTDCL started supplying natural gas for domestic cooking in October 1968 by providing pipe gas connection to the Dhaka residence of renowned author Shawkat Osman in Dhaka. Under the Presidential Order No. 27 of 1972, TGTDCL was placed under Petrobangla as a subsidiary company.

TGTDCL holds about 56.17% of natural gas market share in Bangladesh having 28,65,907 different types of customers as on June 2019. Currently, the company distributes natural gas in the districts of Dhaka, Narayanganj, Narsingdi, Munshiganj, Manikganj, Gazipur, Tangail, Mymensingh, Jamalpur, Sherpur, Netrokona and Kishoreganj. During FY 2018-19, a total of 584.84 BCF of gas was sold by TGDCL to its bulk and retail customers of different categories.

Jalalabad Gas Transmission and Distribution Systems Limited (JGTDSL) formed in 1977 under Petrobangla combining the Habiganj Tea Valley and Sylhet town gas distribution projects to facilitate gas supply for greater Sylhet area. Formally, the company started its operation by providing gas supply to Hazrat Shahjalal's (R) Mazar in 1978. JGTDSL has a total of 3,822.73 km gas network comprising of transmission and distribution pipelines to supply gas to its total 2,23,666 customers of different categories (as on 30 June, 2019). During the FY 2018-19 the company sold approximately 134.02 BCF gas to its customers.

Bakhrabad Gas Distribution Systems Limited (BGDSL) was established in 7 June 1980 under Petrobangla as a production cum gas marketing company for Bakhrabad gas field. The company started commercial marketing of gas from 20 May 1984. Later it was transformed into a transmission and marketing company and the Bakhrabad gas field was transferred to BGFCL ownership in May 1989 putting an end to its production activities. Later, the 2 main transmission pipelines of the company, (110 km long Bakhrabad-Chattogram and 69 km long Bakhrabad-Demra gas transmission pipelines) were transferred to GTCL. BGDSL now operates in greater Cumilla and greater Noakhali and Brahmanbaria districts. BGDSL owns a total of 3,890.96 km gas pipelines (as on 30 June, 2019). During the FY 2018-19, BGDCL sold 129.25 BCF gas to its 4,91,212 (as on 30 June, 2019) customers of different categories.

Pashchimanchal Gas Company Limited (PGCL) was established in 2000 as a gas distribution and marketing company under Petrobangla in the north-west region of the country. PGCL has extended its gas distribution with its pipeline networks of 1,642.09 km (as on June, 2019) to Sirajganj, Baghabari, Bera, Santhia, Shahjadpur, Pabna, Ishwardi, Bogura, Rajshahi and other areas of the western region of the country. PGCL plans to extend further its gas supply networks through pipelines to Rangpur, Nilphamari, Kurigram and Panchagarh districts. During 2018-19 Financial Year PGCL sold a total of 45.16 BCF of gas to its 1,29,322 consumers of different categories.

Karnaphuli Gas Distribution Company Limited (KGDCL) was formed in 2010 under Petrobangla to rationalize and improve gas distribution in the greater Chattogram and Chattogram Hill Tracts area. Earlier distribution networks of the area had been under the BGDSL franchise. During the fiscal year 2018-19 KGDCL sold approximately 113.88 BCF gas to its 6,02,220 consumers (as in December 2019) of different categories.

Sundarban Gas Company Limited (SGCL) was formed in 2009 under Petrobangla for supplying natural gas through pipelines to the south-western region of the country covering Khulna and Barisal Divisions and greater Faridpur district. During FY 2018-2019, SGCL has supplied around 34.59 BCF gas to its 2,386 customers (mainly the power plants other non-bulk and domestic customers within its franchise area).

Rupantarita Prakritic Gas Company Limited (RPGCL) started its activity as a company of Petrobangla from January, 1987. RPGCL is responsible to promote, manage, supervise and co-ordinate the use of CNG and CNG based transport infrastructure in the country, production and distribution of LPG, petrol and diesel obtained from Natural Gas Liquid (NGL). Approximately 3.64 BCF of natural gas has been used in the form of CNG every month from 600 CNG stations in the country (5% of the total gas consumption of the country) during the FY 2018-2019. In addition, RPGCL has produced 6,548 metric tons of LPG by processing NGL in its fractionation plants at Kailashtila in Sylhet in the FY 2018-19 and supplied them to the local market.

RPGCL has been entrusted for implementation of the two agreements signed between Petrobangla and the Excelerate Energy Bangladesh Limited (EEBL) and the Summit LNG Terminal Co. (Pvt.) Ltd. to install 2 Floating Storage Regasification Units (FSRUs) at Moheshkhali, Cox’s Bazar.

The EEBL FSRU started its operation in August 2018 and the Summit FSRU came into operation in April 2019 to process imported LNG and supply re-gasified natural gas to national grid. Each of the FSRUs has installed capacity to supply re-gasified LNG of 500 MMSCF daily. Petrobangla imports every month required volumes of LNG from international spot market and partly from ‘Qatar Gas’ under long term Agreement.

Barapukuria Coal Mining Company Limited (BCMCL) formed in August 1998 under Petrobangla to operate the coal mine at Barapukuria, Dinajpur and for marketing of coal. Barapukuria coal mine started its commercial production in September 2005. During FY 2018-19 a total of 8,05,696 metric tons of coal was produced from the mine. Since the beginning of production form the mine, a total of 1,17,80,828 ton of coal has been extracted until June 2020. The 575 MW thermal power plant consumes presently all the coal produced from the mine.

Maddhapara Granite Mining Company Limited (MGMCL) was formed under Petrobangla in 1998 to operate the mine and marketing of the construction rocks extracted from the Maddhapra mine, Dinajpur. Earlier the mine was built during 1994-2007 at Maddhapara, Dinajpur as a project of Petrobangla. Madhapara Granite Mining Company Limited started commercial production of the mine in May, 2007. During the FY 2018-19, a total 10,67,646.63 metric tons of granite rock was extracted from the mine and 7,31,493.56 metric tons was sold. Since the commencement of productions until December 2019 a total of 5.6 million metric tons of rock was produced from the mine. These rocks are used as construction materials for housing apartments, commercial buildings, roads and highways, bridges, embankments, flood control, railway ballast and sleepers etc. [Md. Mushfiqur Rahman]

Bibliography Petrobangla 2020, Petrobangla Annual Report 2019.