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20 April, 2017 10:59:46 PM
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$320b needed in infrastructure to be world’s 30th economy

STAFF REPORTER
$320b needed in infrastructure to be world’s 30th economy
Sate Minister for Finance and Planning MA Mannan, speaks at a roundtable discussion on 'Road to 2030: Strategic Priorities' jointly organised by Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) and Economic Reporters’ Forum (ERF) at the DCCI auditorium in the capital yesterday. DCCI President Abul Kasem Khan, Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority Executive Chairman Paban Chowdhury were also present. photo: courtesy

Bangladesh needs US$ 320 billion investment only in infrastructure if it wants to become the world's 30th largest economy by 2030, said DCCI President Abul Kasem Khan yesterday.

“Bangladesh needs $20 to $22 billion investment annually only in infrastructure if we want to become 30th largest economy by 2030,” Abul Kasem said while addressing a roundtable discussion on 'Road to 2030: Strategic Priorities' jointly organised by Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) and Economic Reporters’ Forum (ERF) at the DCCI auditorium in the capital.  
Sate Minister for Finance and Planning MA Mannan, was present as the chief guest.
DCCI president said it is essential to make the PPP functional and Bangladesh needs foreign direct investment (FDI) with quality investment in infrastructure.
He said in last 33 years Bangladesh is one of the 3rd fastest growing economy in the world.
"Bangladesh has achieved 7 per cent growth. Now, we have to increase our pace to attain 8 per cent. By the year of 2030, we need 10 per cent GDP growth," Abul Kasem Khan added.
Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority (BEZA) Executive Chairman Paban Chowdhury, distinguished Fellow of Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) Prof Mustafizur Rahman, former DCCI President Asif Ibrahim, Editor of The Financial Express Moazzem Hossain and General Secretary of ERF Ziaur Rahman were present as panel discussants.
Mannan said Bangladesh is on the right path of development and the government is firmly committed to accelerate industrialisation.
Paban Chowdhury said the government has taken an initiative to establish 100 economic zones in the country.
He said the BEZA has taken a move to establish a Land Bank of 100,000 acres of land for economic zones. DCCI President made a PowerPoint presentation and mentioned some challenges like energy crisis, land crisis, lack of infrastructure, higher tax rate, shortage of skilled manpower for economy which needs to be addressed.
He said allocation for infrastructure development is only 2.85 per cent of the GDP which needs to be accelerated to 6-8 per cent of the GDP whereas Vietnam spends 10 per cent of their GDP only in infrastructure.  Abul Kasem Khan underscored the need of Coal Policy soon and urged upon to utilize our own extracted coal to be more competitive. We need to take some actions ahead of 2030 like
Abul Kasem underscored the need for a coal policy soon and called for utilising own extracted coal to be more competitive. "We need to take some actions ahead of 2030 like decentralisation of Dhaka, policy reforms, tax policy, reducing cost of doing business, more gas exploration, reducing cost of energy and skill development."
Prof Mustafizur Rahman said the cost of doing business is increasing day by day.
He said, "We have to be engaged with BCIM economic corridor, BBIN motor vehicle agreement and Asian highway for this regional integration."
Former DCCI President Asif Ibrahim said Bangladesh needs investment in every sector which is true but in line with that Bangladesh needs an investment-friendly environment.
ERF President Saif Islam Dilal said Bangladesh needs to turn its human resources into human capital, stressing the need for coordinated efforts to bring changes in the economy and infrastructure development.

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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