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Meeting: December 18, 2020: BREC gas and renewables emerging market series: Bangladesh


The next interactive discussion of the Brussels Energy Club will take place in partnership with the Embassy and Mission of Bangladesh to the European Union and will address the topic of:


'BREC gas and renewables emerging market series: Bangladesh'


The meeting will take place online via zoom video conference on Friday, 18 December 2020, 12-2pm Central European (Brussels) time


Special welcome and introduction from: 

H. E. Mr. Mahbub Hassan Saleh

Mr Mahbub Hassan Saleh

Ambassador-designate of the People's Republic of Bangladesh to the Kingdom of Belgium and to the European Union





With special guest discussion opener on gas:

Md. Maqbul-E-Elahi ChowdhuryMd. Maqbul-E-Elahi Chowdhury


Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC)






Faisal KhanFaisal Khan

Director, Summit Power International

Additional Managing Director Summit Corporation. 




& on renewables

Siddique ZobairSiddique Zobair

Expert on Energy, Environment and Climate Change

Ex-Additional Secretary and Member, Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority

Ministry of Power, Energy and Mineral Resources

Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh




For most avid energy security followers in Brussels, gas and renewables have long become a topic highly inter-twined on the one hand, if not a marriage of convenience on the other. During the period spanning roughly the years 2000-2010, very few of us could fail to keep a close eye on key gas supply security developments, bearing in mind those game changing supply disruptions emanating from the east, our subsequent efforts to build an Energy Union and efforts to mitigate, in the midst of the growing shadow of the Shale Revolution from across the Atlantic. In the ensuing decade, as the drive towards sustainable energy culminated in the Paris agreements on climate, renewables have tended to super-cede gas as the new buzzword — the fashionable shade of green now somewhat outshining the flammable vision of blue.

Yet, while policy makers in Europe continue to push for renewables largely at the expense of fossil fuels, at the more global level gas and renewables are likely to coexist for quite some time. Indeed, spurred on by a bourgeoning, pre-Covid international LNG trade, demand for investment into a diversity of gas projects remains both politically and commercially desirable — directly in parallel to many governments likewise seeking to attract investment into renewable energy generation. This could, and should, create a more dynamic and diversified set of opportunities for energy investors to choose from, particularly in the emerging markets. We are, after all, living thorough an era of an "energy transition" and participating in the great changes taking place in the market is more desirable for many than merely observing from the side-lines.

In our next interactive discussion in the BREC gas and renewable emerging energy market series, we focus on Bangladesh, a fast moving south Asian country with a population of a modest 165 million. In line with the dynamic growth rates observed in many parts of the world as soon as we venture beyond Europe's immediate neighbourhood, Bangladesh has witnessed substantial economic transformation during the last two decades. This has resulted in vastly increased demand for energy, including investments necessary in order to realise projects along the entire length of the energy value chain. The government of Bangladesh is presently targeting investments in both the gas and renewable energy sectors, particularly in solar, but also into the gas supply, LNG terminals, etc. Projects of all shapes and sizes are currently available, with investor partners from the major east Asian countries, the Gulf States and the big international energy groups already being very active in the market. European stakeholders lag behind their international counterparts somewhat, though it is never too late to start since the government of Bangladesh offers attractive terms and multiple incentives for projects in both the gas and renewable sectors.  

As we turn to Bangladesh in our next interactive session of the BREC gas and renewables emerging energy market series, we will turn to exploring these opportunities in substantial depth. We look forward to seeing you online on December 18


Program for December 18, 2020: 12:00 — 14:00 hours

  • Online arrival, virtual welcome and introduction of speakers and guests
  • Setting out the debate by the Brussels Energy Club
  • Presentations by Discussion opener 1: talk on gas 
  • Presentation by Discussion opener 2: talk on renewables   
  • Roundtable discussion with members and guests of the Brussels Energy Club
  • Meeting remains open for free-flowing online, B-to-B and B-to-G networking and exchange of zoom chat messages, both private and for the whole group
  • Brussels Energy Club will make all efforts to facilitate networking opportunities for participants both during and after the meeting
  • The meeting will be recorded on zoom


Speaker information

Mahbub Hassan Saleh has developed a long, illustrious career as a Bangladesh state civil servant and diplomat having joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as Assistant Secretary as a member of Bangladesh Civil Service (Foreign Affairs) Cadre back in 1995. He served as Assistant Secretary at the Administration, Protocol and Territorial Wings and at Foreign Service Academy in the Ministry till January 2000.  He then served as Senior Assistant Secretary at General Services Wing in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs from 01 April 2001 to 07 September 2001. Following that, he served in the Deputy High Commission for the People"s Republic of Bangladesh, Kolkata, India, as Second Secretary and later as First Secretary from 15 September 2001 to 08 November 2003. Served in the Embassy of the People"s Republic of Bangladesh, Seoul, Republic of Korea, as First Secretary and later as Counsellor from 18 November 2003 to 14 August 2005. Also served as Head of Mission in the capacity of Charge de Affaires ad interim (CDA a.i.) from 09 January 2004 to 14 February 2004.

He served as Director (International Organizations), Director (Americas & Pacific and Counter Terrorism), Director (Personnel) and Director (Foreign Secretary"s Office) in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs from 22 August 2005 to 10 December 2007. Served in the High Commission for the People"s Republic of Bangladesh, Canberra, Australia, as Counsellor from 17 December 2007 to 13 May 2009. Also served as Head of Mission in the capacity of Acting High Commissioner from 20 May 2008 to 03 November 2008. Served in the High Commission for the People"s Republic of Bangladesh, New Delhi, India, from 23 May 2009 to 03 November 2010 as Counsellor and then as Minister and Deputy High Commissioner from 04 November 2010 to 23 September 2014. Served as Director General (Europe) in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs from 01 October 2014 to 16 September 2015. He has been serving as Minister and Deputy Chief of Mission in the Embassy of the People"s Republic of Bangladesh, Washington, DC, since 23 September 2015, before arriving to take up a new post at the Embassy of Bangladesh in Brussels in latter 2020.

Mr Saleh has participated in many international summits, meetings, conferences, seminars and workshops as a member of Bangladesh delegation including representing the country on different occasions. Mahbub Hassan Saleh has a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET), Dhaka, and a Master"s in Diplomacy and Trade from Monash University, Melbourne, Australia. He was born in Dhaka, Bangladesh in 1966, is married and has two sons. He enjoys writing and reciting poetry, reading, public speaking, listening to music, and watching cricket.

Md. Maqbul-E-Elahi Chowdhury has vast experience as a career-long energy specialist and geologist who currently serves on the Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission with the status of Member. Due to his vast experience in the sphere of energy, in the more recent years of his illustrious career he has held several important positions as an advisor and project coordinator for several key stakeholders engaged in the Bangladesh energy sector. These include that of Energy Advisor to the Centre of Environmental and Geographical Services (CEGIS), Project Coordinator for Tokyo Gas Engineering Services, and Consultant to the Asia Development Bank for oil and gas projects in Bangladesh. Prior to some of these important appointments, Mr Chowdhury served the Bangladesh state and energy sector for several decades as a geologist and Director of several major energy projects. He was also the CEO/Managing Director of Maddhapara Granite Mining Company and BAPEX.

He started his career in the energy sector as a geologist with Purbachal Drillers in the mid-1970s, following the completion of his academic studies in geology (M.Sc and B.Sc/Hons) at the University of Dhaka. Mr Chowdhury entertains many prestigious affiliations with professional societies, including that of Life Member of the Bangladesh Geological Society; Life Member of the Bangladesh Advancement of Science; Life Member of the Association of Geoscientists for International Development (AGID); Member of the Society of Exploration Geophysicists (SEG), Member of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG) and Member of the Society of Petroleum Engineers. He is likewise, as of 2019, the President of the Dhaka University Geological Alumni Association. Md. Maqbul-E-Elahi Chowdhury has also been deeply involved in cyclone relief work in the region of the world where Bangladesh is located and also involved in relief work for the Patuakhali Tidal Surge Victims. During the Bangladesh war of liberation, he served with the crack platoon, Sector-2.

Faisal Khan is the Director of Summit Power International and Additional Managing Director of Summit Corporation. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of all subsidiary companies under Summit Group. He was instrumental in the development of over 1,600 MW and a LNG FSRU project in the past decade. Faisal Khan served as the Chairman of Bangladesh"s National Standing Committee for National Energy Strategy for Private Sector Development and also as the Co-Convener of National Standing Committee for Energy & Power Sector at Dhaka Chamber of Commerce & Industries (DCCI). He was also elected as a Director of Bangladesh-China Chamber of Commerce and Bangladesh Independent Power Producers Association (BIPPA).

He currently serves as a Member of the Executive Committee of Bangladesh Association of Publicly Listed Company (BAPLC). Faisal Khan holds a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering Degree from University College London (UCL), UK and a Master of Business Administration Degree from London Business School (LBS), UK.

MR. Siddique Zobair has developed an illustrious career as a bureaucrat and served the Bangladesh Government for 34 years in different capacities, before finally retiring on 1 January 2020 as Additional Secretary to the government. He is now working as a sector expert with the government as well as the private sector. Immediately before his retirement, he worked as Member, Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (SREDA) under Ministry of Power, Energy and Mineral Resources.

He served in the energy sector for the last 24 years in different capacities. He was deeply involved with the preparation of county"s first National Energy Policy in 1996, Policies prepared for de-regularizations of Energy Sector like Private Sector LPG Marketing Policy, Private Sector CNG marketing Policy, Private Sector Lubricating Oil Marketing Policy, Gas Act, Coal Policy, Renewable Energy Policy 2008, Preparation of Power System Master Plan 2016, Preparation of Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Act 2012, Energy Efficiency and Conservation Master Plan 2013, Energy Efficiency and Conservation Rules 2016, Energy Audit Regulation 2018 of Bangladesh and many more. In his tenure at SREDA, Mr. Zobair actively worked with the government, development partners, national and international organizations, financial institutions, civil society, academia and NGO"s to identify necessary interventions and to prepare relevant laws, rules and policies to promote and develop Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency activities in the country. He also served as Senior Staff member in International Organizations

Mr. Zobair actively participated in the preparation of the Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission Act 2003, Gas Act, Energy Efficiency Action Plan, Sustainable Energy for All program of UN etc. He has several publications in national and international journals. Mr. Zobair also developed and worked as focal point officer of SE4ALL programme of UN and SREP programme under CIF, World Bank. He contributes as one of the core members in preparing INDC and the first NDC as well as 3rd National Communication for UNFCC of Bangladesh.  Apart from diploma and short training courses at home and abroad on energy Mr. Siddique Zobair obtained his Master"s in Petroleum Management from University of Alberta, Canada, certificate course on Project Management from AIT, Bangkok and training on Biomass Gasification technology from Indian Institution of Science, Bangalore. He is also a certified Energy Management Specialist. He attends and led the government delegation in different international seminars, workshops and meetings. Mr. Zobair is now working as one of the panel experts of the power sector, Ministry of Power, Energy and Mineral Resources, Government of the People"s Republic of Bangladesh and as an independent consultant on energy, environment and climate change.


Further information and participation

Registration is required for participation in this meeting. Participation is free of charge for members and guests of the Brussels Energy Club. A meeting ID and password required to enter the meeting will be sent to all registered participants on the evening of Thursday, December 17, 2020.

Please contact us for more information on info@brusselsenergyclub.org.


You could find video summary here.