In order to attract investment, the government of Bangladesh has recently conducted road shows in various countries including the United States, the United Kingdom and Dubai. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina recently described Bangladesh as a safe place for investment in a meeting with businessmen of the countries during her visit to India, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Speaking as the chief guest at the inauguration of ‘Made in Bangladesh Week-2022’ organized by the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) recently, PM urged foreign businessmen and entrepreneurs to choose Bangladesh for investment and sourcing.
The PM said, “The country’s investment-friendly policies, along with duty-free and quota-free facilities for Bangladeshi products in various countries around the world, are attracting foreign investors. I also request the country’s business leaders welcome foreign investment. You adopt their technology, and knowledge in your industry.”
Sheikh Hasina said, “We are establishing 100 special economic zones across the country. As a result, Bangladesh has now become the most favorable destination for investment and sourcing in the world.”
Bangladesh has developed the communication system including Trans-Asian Railway, and Trans-Asian Highway and development in waterways, airways, railways, etc. are creating an excellent environment for investment in Bangladesh.
Recently, the Prime Minister inaugurated and laid the foundation stones of 50 industrial units and infrastructure in various economic zones on the occasion of the golden jubilee of the country’s independence. Industrial units along with Karnaphuli Drydock Special Economic Zone, Administrative Building of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Shilpa Nagar (BSMSN), Jamalpur Economic Zone, Srihatta Economic Zone and Sabrang Tourism Park, 20 km Sheikh Hasina Sarani, 230 KVA Gridline and Substation at BSMSN have been inaugurated.
100 Economic Zones have been established in different parts of Bangladesh to attract foreign investments. The economic zones are expected to provide direct and indirect employment to around one crore of people. A target of production and export earnings of around $40 billion has been set for the regions. Out of the planned 100 economic zones, the government has already approved 97 economic zones. Out of this 28 economic zones are in progress.
“We are establishing 100 special economic zones across the country. As a result, Bangladesh has now become the most favorable destination for investment and sourcing in the world.”
Besides private investors, big investors from the USA, China, and Japan are showing interest. South Korea has already pledged major investment in an economic zone.
The government set up the Investment Development Authority six years ago to reduce investment complexity. This authority has launched more than 50 one-stop services. Although there are still some problems, they are trying to solve them quickly.
Government Planning Minister MA Mannan said that there are some problems and the government is trying to identify them and solve them. In order to create an investment-friendly environment in Bangladesh, the Investment Development Authority as well as multiple agencies and ministries of the government are working together to reduce corruption. As a result, the government expects investment to increase.
Bangladesh Government provides special funds for export-oriented industries, working capital facilities for affected industrial and service sector enterprises, working capital facilities for small (including cottage industries) and medium industries, and social protection programs for distressed workers in export-oriented garments, leather goods and footwear industries. Under a total of 28 packages, a loan of 2.37 trillion taka is allocated at very low interest.
The government is providing cash assistance and other facilities to continue the growth of readymade garment exports. The facility of duty-free import of raw materials in warehousing facility, facility of opening letter of credit, import of machinery at low duty and loan facility for purchase of raw materials at very low interest from Export Development Fund (EDF) are provided.
However, there is an acute shortage of gas which is a hindrance to investment, the Prime Minister has already directed the Energy Department and Bangladesh Bank to provide the necessary dollars to ensure uninterrupted electricity and gas supply. The good news is that spot LNG prices in the international market have fallen to a seven-month low. Besides, well renovation work in Bibiana will be completed by the beginning of December. All in all, it is expected that the gas crisis will reduce a lot in December.
In addition, the two industrial groups of India, Reliance and Adani, have finalized plans for major investment in liquefied natural gas terminals, power infrastructure. Recently, the Prime Minister’s Advisor on Power, Energy and Mineral Resources assured that the government is also working on sourcing gas from local sources to solve the crisis.