Project implementation under the Annual Development Programme of the country in the last quarter of the past fiscal year and the initial period of the current financial year faced setback due to the corona pandemic. The common trend in our country is that, unlike the first half of the financial year, project execution rate speeds up in the later half of the fiscal period. But as the government had to impose general holiday and then shutdown to check the spread of the deadly virus, all economic activities including project implementation slowed down drastically, leading to huge loss in economic terms. No doubt, it would be very difficult for the economy to recoup the loss.
But that was not the end of the sad story. Bangladesh had to enter the current fiscal year amid the same very depressing situation and therefore the development work had to face a setback at its initial period. The low project implementation capacity of the agencies concerned, coupled with the impediments created by the pandemic, restricted execution rate to 1.52 per cent in July. The overall ADP implementation in the first two months remained 3.89 per cent against 4.48 per cent in the corresponding period of the previous year. The picture is of the same nature in terms of total expenditure as well.However, the trend of ADP implementation is reported to have started bouncing back as the overall situation is returning to normalcy, with the resumption of regular economic activities. With reference to official data, the lead story of this daily yesterday reports that steady aid utilisation right from the beginning of the current fiscal year helped the implementing agencies post optimistic performances in development work. Analysts are also of the opinion that development work of the government has shifted to a higher gear from the second month of FY21. They also expressed optimism that authorities will adopt more positive measures to speed up project implementation this year. Such measures are not only necessary to reach the annual target of ADP implementation but also to make up the loss due to Covid-19.