Economy needs further growth acceleration to attain middle-income country status by 2021

DHAKA- Foreign Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali today said Bangladesh's economy needs further growth acceleration to attain the middle-income country status by 2021.

"The economy is now at crossroad and a breakthrough in some areas of policy making and institutional processes needs to be find out to achieve social and environmental targets under the SDGs by 2030," he said while speaking at the inaugural session of a conference "Green Growth Solutions" here.

Nordic Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Bangladesh (NCCI) in partnership with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bangladesh, Danish Embassy in Dhaka and Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry organized the conference.

Over 250 Bangladesh and Danish experts and policymakers discussed opportunities and challenges related to green growth at the conference, according to the NCCI.

About the green growth Abul Ahsan Mahmood Ali said Bangladesh is well aware about the need for shifting to green growth from brown but it is not possible to do it overnight considering the realities.

"We've already attached greater emphasis on energy efficiency, energy conservation and utilization of renewable energy in industry and housing sectors," he said.

Over four million solar home systems have been installed across the country benefiting 16 million people, he said, adding that principle of resource efficiency and resource recycling is being promoted in the industrial sector.

"But we will have to go a long way to reach a satisfactory level of green growth," he added.

The minister hoped that the conference attended by experts and officials would come up with ideas on how Bangladesh can move forwards sustainable development path.

"Today's conference would help key decision makers to enrich their understanding on the concept of green growth itself, its adoption for mainstream experiences in the private and public sector," he added.

Danish ambassador to Bangladesh Mikael Hemniti Winther said the Danish experts will share their knowledge and experience with Bangladesh on clean energy.

"I see a huge potential for Danish inspired solution being applied in this country and I hope this conference will boost the green transition of Bangladesh," he added.

Prime Minister's energy affairs adviser Dr Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury, Chief Coordinator for Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Affairs in the Prime Minister's Office Abul Kalam Azad, executive director of state of Green Finn Mortensen, MCCI president Nihad Kabir and NCCI vice president Imtiaz Ilahi also spoke at the conference.

State minister for foreign affairs Shahriar Alam made the closing remarks.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)