CHATTOGRAM: The Padma Bridge, which will connect 21 south and southwestern districts, will help expand businesses, reduce transportation costs and time and accelerate growth, businesspeople in Chattogram have observed.
Although the entire country will be benefited from the mega project being implemented braving many conspiracies at home and abroad, Chattogram will get more than others for having the country’s premier seaport, which handles 92 per cent of the total export and import business of the country, they said.
The districts which will be connected with Dhaka and other parts of the country through the bridge will surely witness significant development in industrialisation, easy transportation of goods and expansion of agriculture there, he said.
As Chattogram is considered as the commercial capital having the premier seaport, the business community in the port city will also be benefited in many ways, he added.
Khatunganj Trade and Industry Association General Secretary Syed Sagir Ahmed said communication through the much-awaited Padma Bridge will open a new horizon in the country’s business sector.
Lack of direct road communication with the southwestern part of the country was the main obstacle to industrialisation and other business activities there, he observed.
As obstacles are going to be removed, the investors will rush there in good numbers while general people will also be diverted in search of employment, said Sagir.
The southwestern region of the country was disconnected in terms of road communication earlier. Padma Bridge will create rapid industrialisation in those areas and create many employment opportunities, he said.
The employment opportunities will help boost the national GDP. As the premier seaport is situated in Chattogram, the connectivity with more areas will increase the importance of the port city further, observed the BGMEA leader.
“Many entrepreneurs will be generated to support the industrialisation in different ways there. It will also create scope for different linkage businesses,” he said.
Besides, the garment sector requires low-price land with good connectivity for flourishment. The districts which remained unnoticed earlier will now draw attention in this regard, said Nazrul.
The trade and commerce of the country will also be decentralised through the opening up of the Padma Bridge, he added.
“The government is trying to enhance the capacity of the Chattogram Port. In line with the effort, the Bay Terminal is being implemented to cope with the growing export-import business,” said the BGMEA vice president.
“So, the port is also going to be ready for handling the pressure from the expected industrialisation in the 21 districts,” he said.
“Anto-Jila Malamal Paribahan Sangstha Truck O Covered Van Malik Samity’ Organising Secretary Md Shafiur Rahman Tipu said the owners and transport workers were reluctant to carry goods to the other bank of the river Padma due to the hurdles in communication.
“It used to take three to five days to return after carrying goods through the ferry. But the Padma Bridge will make it possible for a truck to return after offloading goods by 24 to 36 hours,” said Shafiur.
Consequently, the time and cost of transporting goods will reduce significantly leaving an impact on the market, he said.
The marginal people will be benefited as the tremendous changes in communication will reduce the price of commodities in the area to a larger extent, he said adding that the transport owners will also get more areas for business.