KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia has the potential to be a secure and reliable source of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Bangladesh as it has an established market position as one of the world’s most reliable and reputable LNG suppliers.
Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Economy) Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said Malaysia was ranked fourth in the world among global LNG exporters by capacity in 2020.
With total LNG production of about 30 million tonnes per annum, Malaysia is well poised to supply LNG to global markets including to Bangladesh, he said.
“The promising long-term economic growth of Bangladesh, propelled by its rising middle class, in a population of over 160 million, will expand the demand for energy as power consumption in the country will continue to grow.
“In this regard, LNG will be in a position to play an important role as a cleaner and more sustainable source of energy for Bangladesh. At the same time, a secure and reliable source of LNG will ensure energy security for Bangladesh as it supports its continuing economic growth,” he said.
Mustapa said this in his speech during the virtual signing ceremony of the memorandum of understanding (MOU) between Malaysia and Bangladesh on cooperation in the supply of LNG today.
He said the MOU is a testament to the long-standing and cooperative bilateral relationship between both countries.
“The outlook for gas and the LNG sector is robust, largely due to the world’s increasing focus on energy transition and emissions reduction. The push towards lower carbon-use and more sustainable fuels will result in more demand for LNG.
“In the long term, the share of LNG in the energy mix will increase as we make the transition from coal to more sustainable sources of energy. It is timely then that the market seizes opportunities in the gas sector before competition from renewable energy increases,” he added.
In terms of bilateral trade relations, the minister said Bangladesh is Malaysia’s second largest trading partner among South Asian nations.
Trade between Malaysia and Bangladesh recorded about $1.43 billion in 2020, much less than the $2.58 billion the previous year, largely as a result of the pandemic.
Meanwhile, Malaysia’s total imports from Bangladesh was $207 million while our total exports to Bangladesh was $1.23 billion.
“People-to-people ties are strong between our countries. For instance, about 400,000 Bangladeshi workers and professionals have been issued with temporary visit work permits to work in various sectors in Malaysia, contributing to the development of both countries,” he said.
Mustapa also expressed his confidence that the MoU will take partnership between both countries another significant step forward.
“Let us hope that the supply contract will be finalised soon after today’s signing of the MOU. Malaysia looks forward to further enhancing cooperation and collaboration with Bangladesh not only in the energy sector, but in all other economic and social sectors,” he added. – Bernama