Tk 1,120 crore for environment and forest

DHAKA, June 1, 2017 (BSS) - An allocation of Taka 1,120 crore has been made in the proposed budget for fiscal 2017-18 for Environment and Forest Ministry. The allocation in the proposed budget is Taka 730 crore less than the revised budget of fiscal 2016-17, that was Taka 1,850 crore.

The proposed budget of the fiscal 2016-17 for Environment and Forest ministry was Taka 1,033 crore.

Of the total Taka 1,120 crore, Taka 585 crore will be spent under the Annual Development Programme (ADP) and Taka 535 crore under non-development sector.

Finance Minister Abul Maal Abdul Muhith made the announcement while placing the budget for the new fiscal before the Jatiya Sangsad today.

The finance ministry has published a separate book on climate change issue titled "Climate Protection and Development 2017-18 discussing various issue on climate fund and financing.

In his speech the finance minister said the government plans to integrate the issue of environment in tax policy.

"In line with that, I propose to reduce the tax rate of a readymade garments company to 14 percent if the factory of such company has an internationally recognized green building certification," he said.

Muhith said Bangladesh is one of the most vulnerable countries facing negative impact of global warming and climate change.

"We are aware of this issue and we have already formulated strategies to tackle this change and are drafting a Country Investment Plan (CIP) as a part of our preparation. On the basis of CIP, we will take steps to ensure safe and sustainable environment," he said.

In FY 2016-17, the minister said 44 new and two revised projects have been adopted under the 'Climate Change Trust Fund? which has been established with the government's own resources.

"We have formulated a Road Map to develop National Adaptation Plan (NAP) in a bid to adopt comprehensive and long term adaptation strategy and actions against climate change," he said.

As part of the plan to develop green belt along the entire coast, suitable coastal areas have already been selected he said and adding that an area of 1,738 square kilometers in the Bay of Bengal has been declared as 'Marine Protected Area' which is the first of its kind in the country.

He said the government has set targets of creating mangrove gardens in 20,000 hectares, participatory block gardens in 17,500 hectares and strip gardens in 3,600 km of land within the next three fiscal years for afforestation, conservation of environment, preservation of wildlife and prevention of natural disasters.

"We also have adopted plans to implement co-management activities for conservation of bio-diversity in 25 protected areas," he added.

Furthermore, he said the government has plans to prepare an Action Plan for ensuring low carbon emission-based development as well as Energy Efficient Development,"

Muhith said the Biodiversity Act, 2017 has been enacted which has strengthened Bangladesh's position as a signatory of Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan of Bangladesh (2016-2021) have also been formulated, he added.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)