Phulbari power station (China Gezhouba)

From Global Energy Monitor

Phulbari power station (China Gezhouba) is a proposed 2,000-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power station in Rangpur division, Bangladesh. Coal for the plant would come from the proposed Phulbari coal mine.

The 4,000 MW Phulbari Coal Project (Sinohydro) is also proposed at the location.

The Phulbari Coal Project (Asia Energy) is an old 1,000 MW proposal for the location that was cancelled.


The map below shows the location of Phulbari Upazila but not the exact location of the proposed plant.

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GCM Resources, formerly Asia Energy Corporation, is a British company established with the sole purpose of building a coal mine and power plant in Phulbari. The company, as Asia Energy, had an earlier proposal for a mine and power plant in the 2000's (see Phulbari Coal Project (Asia Energy)). That proposal was met with considerable resistance, with three people having been killed and more than 200 injured by police in a public protest against the proposal in August 2006.

In April 2018, GCM Resources signed a preliminary Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contract with China Gezhouba Group International Engineering (subsidiary of China Energy Engineering Corporation) for a US$3.8 billion, 2,000 MW Phulbari mine-mouth coal plant.[1][2]

In July 2019, GCM Resources announced it had entered into a bilateral agreement with China Nonferrous Metal Industry and Power Construction Corporation of China (PowerChina) to jointly manage the Phulbari coal mine project.[3]

As of June 2020, feasibility studies were underway.[4]

On October 15, 2020, GCM Resources announced that it signed a framework agreement with China Nonferrous Metal Industry's Foreign Engineering and Construction Co., Ltd (otherwise known as NFC) and Power Construction Corporation of China, Ltd (PowerChina). In the two weeks after the announcement, there was increased trading activities involving GCM shares and at least thrice they had to announce Price Monitoring Extension to extend the auction call period. (An opinion piece highlighted that since the refusal of the government to renew GCM's licence for its exploration work, GCM has been maintaining low-level exposure within Bangladesh, thereby avoiding media scrutiny. Instead, the current management of the company was seeking intervention of the Chinese government.)[5]

Under the agreement, NFC was intended to acquire an interest of 5% of the joint venture entity from GCM, based on a valuation of the project to be agreed upon with GCM or its affiliate or investment partner holding the balance of ownership of the project. NFC would arrange financing for the project on acceptable, market-equivalent terms, and would in principle be appointed as the exclusive engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning (EPC) contractor for the project.[6]

In March 2021, GCM Resources shares rose after Bangladesh JV Partners reaffirmed commitments.[7]

In September 2021, following the Chinese President's address to the United Nations General Assembly, it was reported that GCM remained committed to delivering the Phulbari Coal and Power Project "in a form that fits in with the Bangladesh Government's Energy and Power Sector development ambitions" and includes new coal capacity.[8]

(As noted under the 4,000 MW Phulbari Coal Project (Sinohydro) page, in March 2022, GCM Resources raised £2.13m to be spent on developing a Phulbari coal and power project.[9] In addition, joint venture agreements with Power Construction Corp of China were extended for a further two years to March 15, 2024.[10] A related memorandum of understanding was also extended until December 2023.[11])


In December 2018, protesters with Phulbari Solidarity Group, Extinction Rebellion, and Reclaim the Power blocked the entrance to GCM Resources' shareholder meeting in London, in a protest against the proposed project.[12]

In August 2021, protesters from anti-mining and climate justice organisations occupied the entrance of the Bangladesh High Commission to commemorate the 15th Phulbari Day since the 2006 Phulbari Massacre. The Phulbari Solidarity Group and London Mining Network were joined by Extinction Rebellion Youth Solidarity, Global Justice Bloc and Fossil Fuel London in a vigil and protest. Organisers handed over a memorandum signed by 41 international organisations asking the Bangladesh High Commission to call for the end of coal mining and coal-fired power plants in Bangladesh, as well as the delisting of GCM from the London Stock Exchange.[13][14]


In March 2018, IJGlobal disclosed that US$3.8 billion in financing was being sought for the project, and that China Gezhouba would be in charge of arranging the financing. The global investment firm Northland Capital Partners was reported to be the financial adviser for the project.[15] It was anticipated that GCM Resources will own 70% of the project company while China Gezhouba will own 30%.[15]

Project Details

  • Sponsor: GCM Resources
  • Parent company: GCM Resources, China Energy Engineering Corporation
  • Location: Phulbari Upazila, Dinajpur district, Rangpur division
  • Coordinates: 25.516667, 88.883333 (approximate)
  • Status: Announced
  • Gross Capacity: 2000 MW (Units 1-2: 1,000 MW)
  • Type: Ultra-supercritical
  • Projected in service:
  • Coal Type:
  • Coal Source: Phulbari coal mine (undeveloped)
  • Source of financing:

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