Hi-tech parks have kept the ray of hope in economy drawing FDI to technology sector amid coronavirus pandemic.
Bangladesh Hi-Tech Park Authority (BHTPA) under ICT Division in association with local and international agencies is in a bid to develop infrastructure across the country for leading the nation to knowledge economy.Talking to daily sun, BHTPA Managing Director Hosne Ara Begum mentioned that around Tk24 billion will be invested in different Hi-tech parks across the country in the next five years.
“There are many local and international companies getting space in different parks. All big companies will be accommodated in Bangabandhu Hi-tech City in Kaliakoir of Gazipur. We specially focus on research and development-based manufacturing in the park,” she said.
Including Bangabandu Hi-Tech City, five other such parks across the country are ready to attract investment to the country, according to the official.
Barendra Silicon City in Rajshahi and Sylhet Electronic City in Companiganj are also focusing on hardware electronics manufacturing outside Dhaka.
Besides, BHTPA authority also allocated space to foreign and local software firms in Sheikh Hasina Software Technology Park in Jashore and Janata Hi-tech Park in Dhaka.
“Hi-tech parks generated over Tk500 million in revenues in last eight years as five parks are ready for investment. Tech parks got Tk8.25 billion, of which the government injected Tk4.98 billion into the sector,” Secretary Hosne Ara added.There are 13,000 youths employed as 110 start-ups and other tech firms have invested Tk3.27 billion in different Hi-tech parks, according to the official.
Hosne Ara also projected that the Hi-tech parks are expected to generate 50,000 new employments within 2023.
“There are several projects in operation under Hi-tech park authorities including Chattogram Software Technology Park, Sheikh Hasina Institute of Frontier Technology, Sheikh Kamal IT Incubators in 11 districts and Bangladesh Digital Service and Employment Training Centre,”
The government offers a tax waiver for investors in Hi-tech parks in an effort to promote investment and youth employment.
Under the scheme, investors in the parks will get a full tax holiday for the first three years since the inception of their operations after which the benefit will gradually decline to be fully phased out in the eleventh year.
Major local and international companies are opting to invest in the parks. Korean smart phone brand Samsung, local firms Summit Technopolis, Walton, Chinese state-run organisation SinoPharm and Oryx are among the leading companies who got space allocation.
Oryx Biotech recently announced a mega investment worth of US$300 million to establish plant at Bangabandhu Hi-Tech City injecting serial investments in bio-technology.
The firm will develop plant at Hi-Tech City to reach annual production of 1,200 tonnes of plasma which will be used in medicine for many deadly diseases.
Besides, local company DataSoft is assembling smart wrist bands and two types of laptops at its plant in Bangabandhu Hi-Tech City in Gazipur. The company acclaimed global attention by exporting Internet of Things devices to Saudi Arabia from the plant.