Bangladesh seeks increased FDI in economic zones

Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen on Thursday laid emphasis on increasing the foreign direct investment (FDI) into the Economic Zones placing Bangladesh on a higher development trajectory to achieve the dream of ‘Sonar Bangla’.

“We’re making calibrated efforts to strengthen institutional and professional capacity in this regard,” he said, mentioning that FDI can play a significant role in accelerating industrialisation, increasing employment, enhancing exports and transfer of higher skills and technology.

The Foreign Minister was addressing a webinar titled ‘Increasing FDI into the Economic Zones of Bangladesh: Role of Ministry of Foreign Affairs’.

Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen, Executive Chairman, Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority Paban Chowdhury, Heads of Bangladesh Mission abroad, investors and senior officials from different Ministries and Departments took part in the webinar.

Dr Momen said the economy of Bangladesh is moving in the right direction under the right leadership, and a GDP growth of 10 percent will enable the country to fulfill the dream of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman for a ‘Sonar Bangla’.

“My ministry is always ready to work in close coordination with all the stakeholders for translating this dream into a reality,” he said.

The Foreign Minister said an enhanced FDI into Bangladesh can be an important factor in catapulting the country into the envisaged developed status by 2041

Dr Momen said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, through its global network of missions, continues to play its due role in attracting more foreign investment to Bangladesh.

“An overarching objective of our foreign policy and diplomacy is to achieve the goals of economic diplomacy,” he said.

There are five components of economic diplomacy, which include increasing FDI and portfolio expansion, export growth and diversification; improved service delivery; gainful employment, human resource, and technology transfer.

He said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has been making concerted efforts in all these five areas of economic diplomacy.

Dr Momen said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, along with its Missions abroad, are working in close collaboration with all investment authorities and relevant ministries in Bangladesh to further strengthen our trade and investment credentials.

Dr Momen said Bangladesh has emerged as a very lucrative destination for investment under the visionary and dynamic statesmanship of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Bangladesh, globally lauded as a “Development Miracle” in terms of GDP growth and sustainable socio-economic developments.

“This has been made possible by formulating pragmatic policies, by offering attractive incentives and by a supportive government that remains vigilant to improve the investment ecosystem in the country,” he said.

Dr Momen said in order to successfully tackle the challenges posed by the pandemic and the post-graduation dynamics; Bangladesh needs multifaceted expansion of both the export portfolio and export destinations.

“One effective tool for facing these challenges may be to attract a greater inflow of FDI,” said the Foreign Minister.

According to the London-based think tank, Center for Banking and Economic Research (CBER), Bangladesh will emerge as the 25th largest economy in the world with a GDP of USD1.2 trillion by the year 2035.