PM wants Saudi investors to be BD’s dev partners

05 Jun,2016


Jeddah (Saudi Arabia), BdChronicle:

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday urged the Saudi investors and entrepreneurs to be partners of Bangladesh in investment, trade, profit sharing and prosperity to achieve its goals of ‘Vision 2021’ and ‘Vision 2041’.

"As we strive to achieve those goals, I request you to be our partners in investment, trade, profit sharing and prosperity. Together we can bring a change in the lives of millions of people," she said.

Sheikh Hasina said this at a meeting with leaders of Jeddah Chamber of Commerce & Industry (JCCI) here in the morning.

After the meeting, Prime Minister's Press Secretary Ihsanul Karim briefed reporters.

He said Sheikh Hasina also welcomed the Saudi entrepreneurs to invest in Bangladesh’s emerging sectors like shipbuilding, textiles, leather, jute, ceramics, petrochemicals, and agro-processing and pharmaceuticals sectors.

She also sought investments in sectors like plastic goods, light engineering and electronics, telecommunications and IT, power, energy, water and marine and other infrastructure projects as well as in hi-tech manufacturing and microprocessors.

The PM's Press Secretary said a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was also signed on the occasion between Bawani Group of Saudi Arabia and Bangladesh Sena Kalyan Sangstha for supplying skilled manpower, including engineers and architects, in construction sector in the KSA.

Referring to her government's initiative of establishing 100 special economic zones in the country, Hasina said the move has been taken as part of the new plan to industrialise Bangladesh. "We're also developing a number of hi-tech parks in the country for IT industries. Bangladesh offers competitive incentive packages for the investors in these zones and parks," she added.

Pointing out that Bangladesh has the most liberal investment policy, the Prime Minister said the country has been providing protection of foreign investment by law, general tax holiday, concessionary duty on import of machinery, remittances of royalty, and 100 percent foreign equity.

She mentioned that the tremendous success in readymade garment sector and said other sectors like pharmaceuticals, ICT and related industries and shipbuilding are making significant progress.

The Prime Minister said Gartner has billed Bangladesh as one of the top global destinations for software and IT services. Thousands of 'Made in Bangladesh' applications are running on iPhones, Samsung Galaxy, and other Android and Blackberry phones, she said.

Hasina said the country's IT companies and freelance IT professionals earned over 360 million US dollars every year, while around 20,000 young IT graduates are joining the sector.

The Prime Minister said Bangladesh's builders have drawn global attention by making world-class light to medium-size oceangoing vessels. "The industry now commands 1percent share of the US$ 200 billion global market," she noted.

Speaking on the occasion, Vice Chairman of Jeddah Chamber of Commerce & Industry (JCCI) Mazen M Batterjee said the trade and commerce between the two countries should have to be enhanced more.

Mentioning that the KSA could be the second home of Bangladeshi businesses, Mazen said the JCCI would send a business team to Bangladesh to explore the prospects of business.

Referring to the Vision 2030 of the KSA, he said emphasis has been given on enhancing international investment.

Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali, PM's Principal Secretary Md Abul Kalam Azad, Eminent businessmen Salman F Rahman, FBCCI President Abdul Matlub Ahmed, FBCCI 1st Vice President Shafiul Islam Mohiuddin, BGMEA President Siddiqur Rahman, were, among others, present.

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