Uttara Export Processing Zone (EPZ) in Sangalshi in Syedpur Upazila of Nilphamari has been playing a vital socio-economic role. EPZ factories are manufacturing a diverse range of products such as renowned brands like Michael Kors handbags, sweaters garment accessories wigs, spectacle frames and sunglasses, toys and bamboo-cane coffins.
The EPZ’s exports so far amount to Tk140 billion as it recorded $1.3 billion in the 2019-2020 fiscal year. Investors from Bangladesh, China, Hong Kong and the UK have invested around Tk18.50 billion here.
9 local and 9 international companies –include five, from Hong Kong, UK and other local companies – have so far set up their factories on 140 plots, creating employment for 35,000 people – 70% of them rural women. Playing a crucial socio-economic role.
Hong Kong-based Evergreen Products have 10 plots allocated for them, where they manufacture wigs.
Dollmaker Sonic Bangladesh Ltd exports their toys to Asian and European countries. Where over 8,000 workers are employed by the company.
According to Bepza, due to Uttara Export Processing Zone local people’s current average daily income has reached Tk280-320. Many SME’s have sprawled centering the EPZ, thus snowballing the local cash flow.
According to Bepza, there are currently 24 industrial units at the EPZ while five more factories are waiting to go into production.
Uttara EPZ was established in 2001 is built on 212 acres of land.
Authorities said the EPZ is a shining example of how a far-sighted government decision can change the socio-economic picture of an entire region.
Major General Md Nazrul Islam, executive chairman at Bepza, said Uttara EPZ has played a major role in alleviating poverty in the region by generating about 30,000 jobs.