Fuel Imports in Bangladesh

Today I was browsing the Daily Sun when this headline just jumped out at me, Govt to import 940,000 tonnes fuel oil. The reason it jumped out at me I suppose is that back in 2007, my husband, Dr. Ehsan Imdad, gave a presentation at the NRB Conference held in Dhaka at the then Sheraton Hotel (now Ruposhi Bangla Hotel) on biofuel, specifically biodiesel and how it could be generated by the plantation of Jatropha trees on unused lands (called Monga), even alongside the roads and highways. The thing about the Jatropha tree is it grows nearly anywhere and once it starts producing fruit it keeps on producing for approximately 50 years. The processing cost is low because it used a similar process to producing mustard oil. Yet, even after receiving this revolutionary information that could save the government a lot of money in oil imports, it took no initiative to start even a small project.
Even when presented with the facts that neighboring countries are currently turning to biofuel to supplement a good portion of the fuel needs. India uses Jatropha trees to fuel some of the trains, other grow it for profit. Information about these projects, about Jatropha are all over the net, so what are we waiting for?
If the government had listened back then, we would still need to import so much fuel today? It is still not too late, if the government acts now within two years Bangladesh could reduce the amount of fuel it imports dramatically saving it a lot of money.