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Rooppur nuclear power plant will ultimately cost $20 billion

Bangladesh will have to repay around $20 billion against its loan of $11.38 billion from Russia for implementing the 2,400MW Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant, the largest project ever for the country.

The Russian supplier’s credit, signed on July 26 in Moscow, carries 1.75 per cent interest plus LIBOR — London Interbank Offered Rate—with a 30-year repayment period including 10 years’ grace period.

The total cost of the project has been estimated at $12.65 billion, of which Russia agreed to provide 90% in loan.

During an experience sharing discussion on Rooppur Power Plant project held at a city hotel on Monday, Abul Mansur Md Faizullah, Additional Secretary of Economic Relations Division (ERD) informed that.

During the program, Faizullah said that as per the current LIBOR which is 0.9%, Bangladesh has to give back $18.23 billion.

If LIBOR is increased, then Bangladesh has to give back more money. However as per the contract, no matter how much LIBOR has increased, the cumulative interest rate cannot be more than 4%.

In that case, Bangladesh will at most need to repay around $20 billion to Russia.

The payback ($18.23 billion) is $6.84 billion or 60.12 percent higher than the principal credit amount.

Though this high interest will shoot up the project cost, officials said the total cost of the project will not cross $20 billion. 

The experience sharing meeting was attended by a number of secretaries of the government.

It is to be noted that as per experience sharing mission, a total of 13 secretaries of the government have visited Novovoronezh Nuclear Power Plant in Russia in three phases in June and July this year.

Science and Technology Minister Yeafesh Osman, Cabinet Secretary Mohammed Safiul Alam, Prime Minister’s Principal Secretary Md Abul Kalam Azad, Public Administration Secretary Kamal Abdul Naser Chowdhury, Home Secretary Mozammel Haque Khan, Science and technology Secretary Md Sirajul Haque Khan, Finance Secretary Mahbub Ahmed, Rooppur power plant project Director Mohammad Shawkat Akbar, among others, attended the meeting.

Prime Minister’s Principal Secretary Abul Kalam Azad, however, said the credit deal was the best deal the country could ever get.

Yeafesh Osman said it is time to set Bangladesh on a new track through implementing the project.

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