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Govt to promote industries in coastal areas PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 27 February 2008

Staff Correspondent

The government is planning to develop infrastructures and promote industries in coastal areas to reduce industrial occupation of arable land elsewhere, taking the country's future food security into account.

Small and medium enterprises having less or no consumption of gas will be encouraged in the government's policy of future industrialisation, industries secretary Nurul Amin said at a seminar in Dhaka Monday.

'Growing concerns about food security and need for increased agricultural production as well as investment in industries are prompting the government to think about encouraging industries in coastal areas,' said the secretary.

Since the country's gas reserves are projected to be depleted by 2013, future use of gas should be prudently planned so that production of fertiliser is not hampered, he said, adding that setting up of coal-fired power plants will be given priority in future. The Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry organised the seminar on 'Investment Opportunities in Bangladesh.'

Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority executive chairman Brigadier Ashraf Abdullah Yussuf also addressed the seminar. Former executive chairman of Board of Investment Nazrul Islam said many of the global investment monitoring agencies had branded Bangladesh as one of the most potential investment destinations.

But unpredictable changes in policies, fear factors stemmed from anticorruption drive and indecision about big investment projects remain concerns for many potential investors, he pointed out in his keynote paper.

Negative campaigns by right groups, rigidity of rules and absence of effective policies are also hindering investments, the former chief of the investment promotion agency said. Ashraf Abdullah Yussuf called for public-private partnerships in developing new EPZs across the country.

He also listed scopes of lucrative investments in infrastructures in industrial zones. The BEPZA chief said investment in EPZs was on the increase in recent times and hoped that Bangladesh would see even more global investors in the days to come.

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