Sep 08, 2019 | Issue 230


Bangladesh tops GDP growth in last 10 years

Bangladesh recorded the highest economic growth among a list of 26 countries in the last 10 years, according to The Spectator Index. Since 2009, the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) expanded 188% at the current prices. The index provides succinct comparative study on matters pertaining to politics, economics, history, military affairs, sports, science and technology. As per the latest GDP ranking based on purchasing power parity published by the International Monetary Fund, Bangladesh is now the 30th largest economy in the world. The country’s GDP size was $102 billion in 2009. Last year, it stood at $274 billion on the back of steady economic growth, data from the World Bank showed. The GDP size surpassed the $300-billion mark in June, government figures showed.

Remittances top $3.0b in August

Money sent home by expatriate Bangladeshis amounted to over US$3.0 billion in the two months to August, boosted by increased flow on the occasion of Eid-ul-Azha. The flow of remittances rose by nearly 13 per cent to $3.08 billion during the July-August period of financial year 2020 from $2.73 billion in the same period a year earlier, according to the central bank's latest statistics. The government had already allocated Tk 30.60 billion as incentive in the budget for the FY '20 to encourage the expatriate workers to send their money through the legal channels.

HPM Sheikh Hasina has gifted quality, ability to lead Bangladesh: former Indian President Pranab Mukherjee

Honourable Prime Minister (HPM) Sheikh Hasina has gifted quality and ability to lead Bangladesh and she is one of the few leaders in the world having political acumen and bravery to tackle any critical situation, said former Indian President Pranab Mukherjee. Profusely praising the leadership of Sheikh Hasina, he admitted that under her leadership Bangladesh has gained momentum in the sphere of economic development. “She has unique leadership quality which is an example in South Asia. Keeping her head cool in all difficult times, she has been trying to uplift the living standard of the people of her country boldly. I have come across a few leaders in the world who has such courage like her,” he said. Drawing an analogy between the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and his daughter Sheikh Hasina, he said she resembles her father in showing political ingenuity, vision and magnanimity.

World Muslim Unity: HPM for pivotal role of OIC

HPM Sheikh Hasina stressed the need for a pivotal role of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in forging unity of the Muslim community and stopping fratricidal conflicts among them. “The OIC would have to play a stronger role in stopping fratricidal conflicts among the Muslim communities,” she said when Honourable Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif paid a courtesy call on her at the Prime Minister’s Office. She also opined that the conflicts among the Muslim countries could be resolved bilaterally or multilaterally. Mentioning that religious harmony prevails in Bangladesh, she informed the Iranian minister that she had adopted two Shia girls, who were affected by the devastating Nimtali fire.

ADB to fund expansion of four highways

Asian Development Bank (ADB) will fund the expansion of the country’s four highways into four lanes. The highways are Dhaka-Sylhet, Rangpur-Banglabandha, Rangpur-Burimari and Barishal-Faridpur. All four of the highways will have a separate lane for slow-moving vehicles. Work for widening of highways to four lanes from Joydebpur-Elenga and Hatikamrul-Rangpur under South Asia Sub-regional Economic Cooperation Road Connectivity Projects are underway with ADB’s funding. Besides, widening of Cox’s Bazar-Ukhia-Teknaf highway is also progressing with ADB’s funding.

Govt, World Bank sign $185m-deal for renewable energy

The government signed a $185 million financing agreement with the World Bank to add about 310 megawatts renewable energy generation capacity, which will contribute to reliable, affordable electricity and cleaner air. The Scaling-up Renewable Energy Project will focus on utility scale solar photovoltaic (PV) and rooftop PV to expand new markets in renewable energy generation it the country. The project will establish the country’s first large-scale 50MW grid-tied solar PV generation plant in Feni district, which will be implemented by the Electricity Generation Company of Bangladesh (EGCB). The project will help unlock private investment and will aim to raise up to $212 million in financing from the private sector, commercial banks, and other sources.

Padma Bridge set to complete in 2021

The construction work of the Padma Bridge is set to be completed within 2020 as some 83% work of the main bridge is complete. The 6.15 kilometre bridge is Bangladesh’s largest infrastructure project till date. Once in operation, the bridge is expected to boost the GDP by 1.2%. A total of 31 out of 42 pillars of the main bridge have already been installed and it is expected that the remaining 11 pillars will be constructed by December this year. On the other hand, some 27 spans of the bridge have been brought to the Mawa site and of those, 14 have been installed.

Bangladesh business environment improves

The country is doing well in exporting apparels and other goods in global markets taking the advantage of business friendly atmosphere following emergence of domestic political stability, observed business insiders, according to media reports. The global buyers are now more confident as the image of the country’s garment sector has become brightened because of remediation works that upgrade the industry’s capability to meet the buyers’ requirements both in terms of standard and capacity. According to latest data of Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) the country’s merchandise export earnings grew by 10.55% year-on-year to $40.53 billion in the fiscal year 2018-19 riding on high volume of garment shipment. Of the export volume 84 percent comes from garment sector. Of the amount, the country earned $34.13 billion from garment exports marking a 11.49 percent year-on-year growth.

23, Bangabandhu Avenue, Dhaka-1000. Bangladesh.

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