Monthly Progress Report (43) March 2023

1. Major Activities of the Month

There are only three months of the activity period remaining. Among this period, one months (from late March to late April) will have to be the blank period due to SREDA’s requirement not to conduct field activities. It leaves only two months of the field activity period for the PI Consultant Team to support the implementation of the Energy Efficiency & Conservation Promotion Financing Project. During the month of March, but only up to Wednesday 22nd (before the start of the month of Ramadan), the PI Consultant Team actively conducted work including the key activities summarized below: 

1.1 Following up TAC 2 

In response to the second technical advisory committee (TAC) meeting, which was held back on 1 December 2023, SREDA decided to approve some of the eligibility list enhancement proposal items, while leaving the other item to be further discussed. The PI Consultant Team, after revising and / or elaborating on the remaining items, held individual consultations with the TAC member experts to further explain the necessity of the enhancement from the technical viewpoints. Through the consultations, comments were received to adhere to international standards whenever possible, and to be consistent to the demand and supply conditions of the equipment in Bangladesh. 

Having received valuable technical comments from the TAC member experts, the PI Consultant Team further improved the eligible technology and equipment list by incorporating the comments. The PI Consultant Team has suggested SREDA to circulate the improved proposal among the TAC members for their no objection, after which approval decision can be made, to have the enhancement reflected on the Project Business Process Manuals. 

Fig 1a Professor Dr Zahurul Haq
Fig 1b Professor Dr Hasan Afroz
Fig 1c ECE Building, BUET
Fig 1d Professor Dr Ziaur Rahman Khan

1.2 Contribution to the Promotion of Green Financing 

(1) Bangladesh Bank 

Bangladesh Bank (BB) has the policy to promote green financing within the country’s banks and the non-bank financial institutions (NBFIs). The Project, offering finance facility for energy efficient investment righty contributes to this BB Green Finance policy. On 9 March 2023, the PI Consultant Team, together with BIFFL, paid a visit to the Sustainable Finance Department of BB to confirm the Project’s contribution toward the BB policy target achievement. Through the meeting, it was confirmed that the Project is contributing to the Green Finance policy of BB through IDCOL and BIFFL. It was also confirmed that BB is eager to quantify the effect of the Green Finance, including by means of energy saving effect calculation. 

Fig 2a Sustainable Finance Department
Fig 2b Visit to BB with BIFFL

(2) Scheduled Banks 

According to the BB information, the scheduled banks in Bangladesh are also contributing to the penetration of the Green Finance. Three banks, namely Brac Bank, Islami Bank and City Bank were referred to as the leading scheduled banks who are promoting the Green Financing. On 20 March 2023, the PI Consultant Team has a discussion with the City Bank Limited, to identify their strong intention to further enhance the Green Financing within their business portfolio. Demand for a method to channel the concessional fund through the private banks to promote green financing was repeatedly expressed in the meeting. The PI Consultant Team agreed to conveying the message to JICA Bangladesh Office. The City Bank management were also eager to continue the dialogues on the possibility of their involvement in any other JICA funded finance facility implementations. 

Fig 3a The City Bank Limited
Fig 3b Discussion on Green Financing

1.3 Environmental and Social Considerations 

CEGIS, who is the contributor on the environmental and social considerations issues, worked closely together with the technical experts of the PI Consultant Team to develop the environmental and social awareness raising flyers for the selected industrial sub-sectors. The team meeting was held at the PI Consultant Team’s office at SREDA, on 20 March 2023, where five sub-sectors, as the subject of the flyer preparations were identified: namely spinning, cement, dyeing, steel and building sub-sectors. The flyers are intended to be awareness raising material for the business management, notably the factory owners to consider the aspects other than energy efficiency, such as the environment protection, health, safety of the labourers and the community surrounding the premises, etc. The flyers, once completed, will be made publicly available on the Project website, and distributed in the final Project completion seminar to be convened in the end of May 2023. 

Fig 4a First Draft of a Flyer Cover
Fig 4b E&S meeting at SREDA Office

1.4 Effect Calculation Method Dissemination 

The two Project implementing financial institutions, IDCOL and BIFFL, have now sufficient capacity to conduct technical appraisal and effect calculations of their lending cases. Having received a request from BIFFL, the PI Consultant Team, to start with, convened an effect calculation method dissemination workshop for BIFFL on 19 March 2023. The basics of the energy saving capacity and its calculation method were shared with the technical, credit risk management and the environmental officers at BIFFL. It is expected that IDCOL and BIFFL will eventually calculate the energy saving effects for their sub-project, then, to be reported to BB. The PI Consultant Team intends to conduct a similar workshop for IDCOL as well as for BB, as required. 

Fig 5a Effect Calculation Method Dissemination
Fig 5b Basics of the Energy Saving Capacity

1.5 Zero Energy Building Promotion 

It is the global trend, as recently reported by the International Energy Agency (IEA) and the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) that the focus of the demand side energy efficiency should be focused on the building sector energy efficiency. The top cost effectiveness in energy efficiency investment is said to be expected with the replacement of the boilers with the heat pump, as well as with the introduction of zero energy buildings (ZEBs). In line with such orientation with the global trend, the PI Consultant Team is communicating with the policy makers and the industry leaders to make this trend penetrated. During the month, Dr Kimio Yoshida, the JICA inhouse expert for promotion of energy efficiency presented his ZEB promotion strategy to SREDA (20 March 2023) and to the City Bank Limited (21 March 2023). The presentation material is as in Appendix 43-1. 

Fig 6a ZEB Presentation at SREDA
Fig 6b ZEB Presentation at 
the City Bank Limited

1.6 Benchmarking 

Data on the best practices of energy efficiency may be collected by SREDA to be shared among the industries. The PI Consultant Team is supporting SREDA for this benchmarking activity. Benchmarking for some of the equipment in the eligible list have been conducted in the past. Further to equipment-based benchmarking, industrial process benchmarking is now performed. Based on KAFCO visit back in January, the PI Consultant Team prepared a simple presentation on the benchmarking for ammonia and urea manufacturing process based on the findings at KAFCO. The presentation is attached as Appendix 43-2 of this report. 

1.7 Draft Final Report 

With the end of the consultant work approaching, the PI Consultant Team has started drafting the draft final report of the consulting service activities to be submitted to SREDA. The report is expected to be submitted to SREDA soon after the Eid ul-Fitr festive period, i.e., 26 April 2023. After incorporating comments received from SREDA, the finalised report will be available by the end of May, upon completion of the PI Consultant Team’s activities. 

2. Appendices

Appendix 43-1 Priority Technologies for ZEB (zero energy building) / ZEH (zero energy house) and Economical View 

Appendix 43-2 Visit to KAFCO – Discussions on Energy Efficiency Benchmarking for Ammonia / Urea Plant