The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) on Thursday approved a Taka 4,636 crore project to make around 3 crore higher technology based e-passports to make Bangladeshi passports to keep pace with other countries.
With ECNEC chairperson and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair, the approval came from the 26th ECNEC meeting of the outgoing fiscal year (FY18) held at the NEC conference room in the capital’s Sher-e-Bangla Nagar area.
Briefing reporters after the meeting, Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal said the day’s ECNEC meeting also approved a proposal of the Bridges Division for acquiring some additional 1,162.67 hectares of land for the ongoing Padma Multipurpose Bridge Project for which additional Taka 1,400 crore will be required.
Out of the proposed 1,162.67 hectares of additional land to be acquired for the project, about 9.35 hectares will be acquired at the Mawa end of the bridge while the remaining 1,153.32 hectares will be acquired at Janzira end.
The Padma Multipurpose Bridge Project (2nd revised) is being implemented as a fast track project at an estimated cost of Taka 28,793.38 crore to be implemented by December 2018. Out of the five components of the project works, three components — Janzira connecting road, Mawa connecting road and Service Area-2 — have already been completed. The work for main bridge construction and river training is ongoing.
The ECNEC approved a total of 14 projects with an outlay of Taka 16,972.24 crore.
The Planning Minister said the e-passport project has been undertaken to fulfill various international demands as many countries in the world nowadays do not accept Machine Readable Passports (MRPs).
During the implementation of the project, AHM Mustafa Kamal said the MRPs will also be in effect alongside the e-passports.