Govt emphasises private sector, innovations for power sector modernisation

State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid today said the government emphasised innovative initiatives for modernization of the power sector.

"Special initiatives have been taken to promote renewable energy. Approval and acquisition of 2000 MW of power generation from renewable sources by 2024 is underway," he said.

Nasrul Hamid made the remarks while addressing a closing ceremony as the chief guest of the workshop titled "Systematic identification and access to land for renewable energy in Bangladesh" at Intercontinental Hotel in the city.

He said financing is an important issue in the expansion of renewable energy, adding, "Financing is also associated with low cost financing.

The government is encouraging expansion of renewable energy by keeping land for agriculture. Net metering programme for Rooftop Solar has been strengthened."

Nasrul Hamid sought cooperation of the concerned parties to use of unused non-agricultural land.

A pre-feasibility study on increasing investment in renewable energy and land acquisition was carried out in collaboration with the World Bank, he said.

The state minister, however, said the verification report recommends a memorandum of understanding with the Ministry of Lands.

The pre-feasibility report identified six sites from which 6306.38 MW of electricity can be generated from renewable sources, he added.

With additional secretary of Power Division Md Nurul Alam in the chair, the function was addressed, among others, by Sustainable Renewable Energy Development Authority (SREDA) Chairman Munira Sultana and Chairman of Bangladesh Power Development Board Md Mahbubur Rahman.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

Bangladesh, Uzbekistan can offer much to each other: FBCCI President

Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) President Md. Jashim Uddin today said that both Bangladesh and Uzbekistan can offer much to each other in terms of economic collaboration.

"Both the countries can be benefited by exploring their potential sectors," he told a discussion meeting with the Uzbekistan delegation.

Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Uzbekistan Bakhrom Aloev led the delegation held at the FBCCI Icon in the capital today, said a press release.

Terming Uzbekistan as an important friend and growth partner, the FBCCI president said both the countries have gained momentum with some high-level visits and discussions on the future of the two country's partnership.

"Trade and economic cooperation have been the key focuses of Dhaka-Tashkent relations. Both the countries have identified potential sectors for collaboration, including textiles, pharmaceuticals, agriculture, and information technology," he added.

Jashim mentioned that the bilateral trade reached $35.12 million in FY2022 which is far below the untapped potential. "I hope through this visit and meeting, we can work together to explore mutually beneficial investment and trade opportunities,"

He said that Bangladesh serves as the regional gateway of South Asia and ASEAN countries and has very close connectivity with India and China, the two giants of Asia.

"The government is developing some 100 economic zones, 30 IT parks, and tourism parks with modern infrastructure. Uzbekistan can utilize this opportunity to start a business here in Bangladesh," he mentioned.

The FBCCI President said that Bangladesh have competitive strengths in apparel, leather goods, pharmaceuticals, frozen seafood, plastic products, ceramics, jute, and leather products, ICT, FMCG, home appliances and others are leading the way for business diversification.

"Uzbek can import pharmaceutical products and generic drugs from Bangladesh as we are producing high-quality medicines and drugs and exporting them to more than 100 countries in the world," he added.

Uzbek Deputy Minister Bakhrom Aloev said, "Bangladesh and Uzbekistan have many opportunities. It's time to elaborate the relation between the two great countries. Right now, connectivity is one of the issues, but we're working on it and we're looking forward in strengthening the bilateral trade between the two countries".

He also invited the FBCCI to pay a visit to Uzbekistan and explore the business potential.

FBCCI vice president Md. Amin Helaly said that the interactions with the private sector have helped Bangladesh and Uzbekistan to develop a future trade relationship by encouraging mutual investment and addressing trade barriers for the greater benefit of the two nations.

FBCCI vice president Md. Habib Ullah Dawn, directors, and other business leaders were present at the program.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

Cabinet approves draft RPO

The Cabinet today approved the draft of Representation of the People (Amendment) Act, 2023 allowing the Election Commission (EC) to postpone or cancel elections of one or several centres anytime if irregularities are found.

However, the provision will not allow the authority to cancel or postpone the election of an entire constituency.

Cabinet Secretary Md. Mahbub Hossain told reporters in a press conference at the Bangladesh Secretariat after the cabinet meeting.

The meeting was held at Prime Minister's Office with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair.

The cabinet secretary said as per the draft law, if a returning officer declares a candidate's nomination paper valid, anyone can file an appeal against that decision.

But in the existing act, candidates could only appeal if the returning officer cancelled their nomination paper, he said.

Mahbub Hossain said candidates need to pay bills seven days before submitting nomination papers in the existing act.

In the draft law, candidates will get scopes to pay copies of bills till one day before submitting nomination papers, he said.

The cabinet secretary said candidates will also have to submit TIN certificate and evidence of income tax return submission with their nomination paper.

There is a provision of minimum two years and maximum seven years imprisonment for obstructing the works of journalists and observers in the proposed RPO (Amendment) Act, he said.

The deadline, he said, for submitting the constitutions of political parties has been extended to 2030, which was 2020 in existing law.

The cabinet also approved the draft of the Secured Transactions (Movable Property) Act, 2023.

He said once the law is enacted, people can get loans from banks against movable assets.

Mahbub Hossain said the Cabinet extended congratulations to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for UN recognition to her innovative Community Clinic model to reach healthcare services the doorstep of common people through establishing Community Clinic across the country.

He said community clinic is a unique initiative of Sheikh Hasina which attained local and international accolades.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

Global Accessibility Awareness Day celebrated in country

The Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) was celebrated in the country today like elsewhere in the world.

The Aspire to Innovate-a2i Programme and the Friendship, a social purpose organization, celebrated the day through different programmes in the city, said a press release.

Marking the day, the Aspire to Innovate-a2i Programme and the Friendship organized a workshop while Secretary of the ICT Division Md. Shamsul Arefin was present at the programme as the chief guest.

Presided over by a2i Project Director (Additional Secretary) Dewan Muhammad Humayun Kabir, Joint Project Director of a2i Md. Shaiful Islam and Deputy Director of Friendship Ahmed Toufiqur Rahman were present at the event as special guests.

Speaking on the occasion, Md Shamsul Arefin highlighted the achievements towards building the Smart Bangladesh and emphasized the need for an inclusive digital government service system.

He assured of all-out cooperation in implementing the National Web and e-Services Accessibility Guidelines and making websites and digital services accessible for all including persons with disability.

Programme Specialist Innovation of a2i Manik Mahmud delivered welcome address in the function and briefed about the Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD). Informative sessions and practical demonstrations were held at the event.

National Consultant accessibility at a2i Vashkar Bhattacharjee showcased accessibility websites and digital services in Bangladesh and highlighted the barriers that still exist.

Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) is an awareness day focusing on digital access and inclusion for the more than one billion people alive today who live with disabilities or impairments. It is marked annually on the third Thursday of May.

GAAD serves as a platform to raise awareness and promote accessibility in the digital realm for over 16 million people with disabilities in Bangladesh.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

HOOD works for betterment of underprivileged people

HOOD, a non-profitable, humanitarian organisation for old and distressed organization, has been assisting underprivileged people through various programmes and projects for ensuring sustainable development.

"Hood's vision is to work independently and impartially for humanity and improvement of the underprivileged as well as common people in the globe," president of HOOD Dr Nazrul Hossain Titu said.

Addressing a workshop on 'stroke prevention and treatment', he said HOOD's mission is to rehabilitate the deprived and backward section of poor through education, training, medical services and ensure sustainable employment.

The workshop was held at Narayanganj Club Limited (NCL) with convener of youth sub-committee of NCL Saifur Rahman in the chair. President of Narayanganj Club Limited Asif Hasan Mahmood spoke on the occasion as the chief guest.

Youth Affairs Sub-committee of the NCL organized the workshop with patronization of the HOOD.

Dr Tanveer Zaman presented the keynote paper, while HOOD president Professor Dr Nazrul Hossain was the main speaker.

Among others, HOOD members including General Secretary Engineer Md Hasan Ahmed Khan Sajal, Engr Gholam Mohammed, Engr Manirul Haque, Plastic surgeon Dr Hedayet, Mohammad Abdur Rab Rubel, Major Moinul, Deputy Secretary Sayeed, Alamgir and Ahmed Asif joined the workshop.

Sajal said the present government, led by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, has made life of rural people as well as urban easier and safer in many ways through introducing advanced technology over the last decades.

A group of ex-students of the Notre Dame College formed the HOOD for serving distressed people of the country.

The HOOD's aim is to set up a support centre for autistic and special needs children with all modern facilities and provision of residential-non-residential vocational employment.

Dr Tanvir Zaman said modern quality specialized hospitals and nursing training centres will also be set up to provide medical and healthcare services to the needy sections of people.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

Shahriar optimistic over Bangladesh’s victory in IMO SG election

State Minister for Foreign Affairs Md Shahriar Alam today said Dhaka is optimistic over Bangladesh's victory the International Maritime Organization (IMO) elections for the post of its Secretary General.

"We expect good result," he told reporters at state guesthouse Padma after briefing the diplomats of the IMO council member countries stationed here to seek support in favour of the Bangladesh candidate.

Bangladesh has nominated Captain Moin Uddin Ahmed as a candidate for the post of IMO Secretary-General.

The election will take place at IMO Headquarters on July 18.

IMO currently has 175 Member States and three Associate Members and there are candidates from Finland, China, Turkey, Dominica, Kenya and Panama for the same post.

"To seek support in favour of Bangladesh candidate and to inform about him (candidate), the briefing was arranged," Ministry of Foreign Affairs Spokesperson Seheli Sabrin told reporters at a weekly briefing on Thursday.

Bangladesh has nominated Captain Moin Ahmed as a candidate for the post who was present at the briefing, said the Spokesperson.

The election will take place at IMO Headquarters on July 18, according to the IMO.

The assembly will be invited to approve the appointment, and the elected Secretary-General will take office on January 1, 2024.

For the post of Secretary-General seven Member States have each nominated a candidate - Captain Moin Ahmed (Bangladesh), Suat Hayri Aka (T?rkiye), Arsenio Antonio Dominguez Velasco (Panama), Dr. Cleopatra Doumbia-Henry (Dominica), Nancy Karigithu (Kenya), Minna Kivim"ki (Finland) and Zhang Xiaojie (China).

Bangladesh Captain Moin Ahmed was elected as the Director-General of International Maritime Satellite Organization (IMSO) in their 25th assembly session.

He was first elected as the Director General in November, 2014 and commenced his position in April, 2015.

He was a Senior Technical Officer in IMO Maritime Safety Division, before his nomination as the Director General of IMSO in 2014.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

Tipu seeks Uzbek investment in economic zones, hi-tech parks

Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi today sought investment from the investors of Uzbekistan in the country's special economic zones and hi-tech parks.

He also called for re-introducing direct flight between the two countries to promote bilateral trade and expansion of tourism.

Tipu made the urge when a delegation of Uzbekistan, led by deputy minister of foreign affairs Bakhrom Aloev, met him at the Ministry of Commerce at Bangladesh Secretariat today, said a ministry press release.

He said that there is a huge potential for promoting bilateral trade, commerce and tourism.

The commerce minister said that under the directives of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, some 100 special economic zones as well as numerous hi-tech parks are being set up in Bangladesh while attractive stimulus packages and incentives have been announced for the foreign investors.

In this regard, he urged the Uzbek investors to avail such facility and thus invest in Bangladesh in large numbers.

Following request from the Bangladesh Minister for reintroducing direct flight and simplification of visa procedures, the Uzbek deputy minister said that his country would take necessary steps in this regard.

Mentioning that Prime Minster Sheikh Hasina has been putting special emphasis on economic diplomacy, Tipu said a Bangladesh delegation, led by him, will take part in the "Inter Governmental Commission" to be held in August in Uzbekistan to boost bilateral trade and commerce side by side increasing the participation of the private sector.

Recalling that the bilateral relations between the two countries was established back in 1973 with the visit of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman to Uzbekistan, Tipu said that this relation got a new dimension with the passage of time.

Mentioning that Bangladesh is currently exporting pharmaceuticals to more than 152 countries, he said that there is also huge scope for boosting cooperation between the two countries in the fields of pharmaceuticals, generic medicines, jute, jute-made goods, frozen foods, ceramic products, ICT products, handicrafts, leather, agriculture, fresh fruits, vegetables, agriculture machineries skills development and transfer of technologies.

In response, the Uzbek deputy minister requested the Commerce Minister to exhibit Bangladeshi products in Uzbekistan side by side urged the Bangladeshi businesses to invest in Uzbekistan.

In the last fiscal year (FY22), Bangladesh exported goods worth $26.33 million to Uzbekistan against the imports of $8.80 million.

High officials of both the countries were present, among others, on the occasion.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

Madrasah board’s May 25 exam rescheduled

Bangladesh Madrasah Education Board authorities today rescheduled the examination for higher mathematics scheduled to be held on May 25 due to an unavoidable reason.

"The examination for higher mathematics scheduled to be held on May 25 has been postponed due to unavoidable circumstances," said a statement signed by Exam Controller of Madrasah Education Board Md Kamal Uddin this evening.

The board, earlier, postponed the examination for English first paper, which was scheduled for May 14, due to the cyclone 'Mocha'.

The postponed examinations of the English first paper and the higher mathematics will be held on May 27 and 28 respectively across the country simultaneously, the statement said.

It also said that the practical and oral tests of all subjects will be held from May 29 to June 4.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha