Foreign investment in ‘paper’ – Bhorer Kagoj

One-third of registrations in response, political uncertainty and lack of good governance

The amount of investment that comes to the country on paper at the end of the year does not match the rate. Of the number of investment proposals registered with the Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA) every three months, only one-third of its proposals are finalized at the end of the year. The South Asian Network on Economic Modeling, a non-governmental research organization, has suggested creating new employment opportunities and creating a workforce suitable for new work environments to make development sustainable and sustainable. According to the company, there is no alternative to creating new employment opportunities for the overall development of the country. Investment is also involved in increasing employment. If investment increases, employment will increase.

As seen, investment declined during the Corona epidemic. However, the average investment in the world has decreased at this time. Due to the corona, Bangladesh has not been able to get the desired investment in 2020. However, in 2021, there were various measures to increase domestic and foreign investment. Many meetings, seminars and road shows have been held in different countries to increase investment. But investment has not increased much. The initiatives of companies like Investment Development Authority, Hi-Tech Park and Bangladesh Economic Zone were visible throughout the year. To make business easier, the government provides automation and data integration process of various companies, road shows, participation in Dubai Expo, bilateral business agreements, organization of international investment summits, tax exemption and various facilities for investment in the country. Even then, due to lack of conducive environment, investment is not going as expected.

Most recently, in 2016, a huge investment of কোটি 1.5 billion from Japan Tobacco came to Bangladesh. Since then no major foreign investment has come. Even China and America

In the wake of the trade war, six Japanese companies diverted their investments from China. In this case, the Japanese companies went to Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam, Myanmar but did not come to Bangladesh. However, at the BIDA International Summit held last November, Saudi Arabian company Engineering Dimensions signed an agreement to invest কোটি 1.5 billion (Tk 12,750 crore) in Bangladesh.
According to Bida, Engineering Dimensions will jointly invest in the sugar, fertilizer and beverage industries in Chittagong with Dipan Engineering of Bangladesh. Besides, the Saudi company will set up a cement factory jointly with Titas Enterprise of the country.

According to experts, the proposals for new project registration may not be implemented in the end. So even if the registration increases, it is not a very reliable source to increase investment. They are talking about finding a way to attract investment and finding a quick solution. In this context, the former caretaker government’s financial adviser. AB Mirza Azizul Islam said entrepreneurs are showing interest in new investments as the situation in Corona has improved. The current picture of import of industrial capital equipment, registration of new projects and disbursement of loans to the private sector indicates that. However, the proposals for registration of new projects may not be implemented in the end. So even if the project registration increases, it is not a very reliable source to increase investment.

He said, in a word, investment environment has not been created in the country. The main reasons for not investing are political uncertainty and lack of good governance. And there has been no development in these two problems. Besides, the regular problem of Bangladesh is infrastructural weakness. Especially the new gas connection off. And without gas you can’t invest. For these reasons, investors are not getting confidence.

On the other hand, foreign investment in Bangladesh is limited to promises. The rate at which investments are registered in the country every year is not even close to the implementation rate. Again, as far as implementation is concerned, all of it is foreign reinvestment. Although foreign direct investment (FDI) has increased on paper, the country is not reaping the benefits. Besides, the rate of implementation of new investments is very low. Policy Research Institute (PRI) Executive Director. Ahsan H. Mansoor said that in order to take the economy forward, investment must be increased. This includes private, government and foreign investment. In this case, a few things should be given importance.

According to the data, in the last two years, Bangladesh has received offers of foreign investment of 21.18 billion or 2111 crore dollars. In Bangladeshi currency, the amount is about 1 lakh 80 thousand crore rupees. According to Bida, the company has received offers of বিনিয়োগ 1.47 billion in foreign investment in two years. Apart from this, the Bangladesh Economic Zone Authority (BEZA) has received an investment proposal of কোটি 500 million and the Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority (BEPZA) has received an investment proposal of ১৩ 135 million. Meanwhile, according to the Bangladesh Bank, in the fiscal year 2020-21, Bangladesh received কোটি 2.5 billion in foreign direct investment (FDI). In the previous financial year which was 236 crore dollars.

Bida added that the company had received a total investment offer of ৭ 6.12 billion last year, even though the corona virus had started to spread. Of this, ৮ 465 million was investment proposals from Bangladeshi entrepreneurs. Apart from this, the joint investment proposal with foreigners and Bangladeshis alone was another ৬ 227 million. As of December 20 last year, Bida had registered an investment proposal of ৭৬ 850 million. Of this, বিনিয়োগ 850 million is for local investment and কোটি 808.3 million is for foreign and joint ventures.

Bidar executive chairman Mohammad Sirajul Islam said the whole world was going through a challenging time due to the corona virus epidemic. The economic situation is getting worse in all countries. In such a situation, significant investment proposal in Bangladesh is the result of joint efforts of all. Hopefully, if the investments start coming in the new financial year, the country’s economy will get the benefits along with new employment.

According to the Investment Development Authority of Bangladesh, the number of registered industrial enterprises from July to September was 189. The proposed investment of these registered companies is more than Tk 20,463 crore. Of these, seven are foreign investments and five are joint ventures. According to statistics, a total of 12 investment proposals, including seven foreign and five joint ventures, have been made in various industrial sectors of the country from July to September last year. And the local investment is 1 lakh 75 thousand million rupees. Which is 56,063 million more than the same period last year.

There were various initiatives of the Investment Development Authority under the Prime Minister’s Office throughout the year to attract all kinds of investments from bidders. At the beginning of the year, Bida added 41 services to their website. Where multi-faceted services are integrated to facilitate investment of domestic and foreign entrepreneurs. In other words, with the registration of the bidder, from now on, the land or land registration for investment, trade license of the city corporation, starting from the electricity connection, the company started giving the name certificate service. In addition, for the rest of the year, 20 more services are connected under OSS. As a result, investors can now get electricity connection within 17 days of application. The company also said it would take just a week to get clearance for business and that a total of 154 services from 35 companies would be offered in the new year with the technical support of the International Finance Corporation.

SR


Source: Bhorer Kagoj by www.bhorerkagoj.com.

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