Speaking at a high-level policy roundtable arranged by the US–Bangladesh Business Council at Lotte New York Palace Hotel, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has rightly said that the USA can be the most robust partner of Bangladesh in its journey towards LDC graduation. She asked the US investors to come to Bangladesh to tap into the its liberal investment policy for mutual benefits. Bangladesh offers congenial investment environment as well as a host of favourable policies to foreign investors, thanks to which foreign direct investment has been steadily growing.
Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA) and Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority (BEZA) are now offering one-step services for setting up businesses in the country. To its credit the government is also setting up as many as 100 special economic zones which have already turned into lucrative hubs for foreign businesses. Coupled with a rapid increase in the capacity of providing utility facilities like electricity and gas, tremendous development in infrastructure and port facilities, tax waiver and incentive in some cases, the special economic zones are expected to become investors’ haven.
There are a lot of potential sectors for investment in Bangladesh. Since the country is one of the world’s leading apparel manufacturers, it is an ideal place for investment in the textile sector; especially the scope and potential for investment in high value-added apparel products in the manmade fibre sector is quite high. Bangladesh is heavily dependent on imports to meet demand for non-cotton fabrics. Therefore, the scope for investment in non-cotton textile is wide open, which can provide the country an import substitution as well.
Besides, there are huge scopes for investment in leather, eco-friendly jute and jute derivatives, ICT and in IT Enabled Services. Above all, Bangladesh has a large labour force which is hardworking, affordable and adaptable. So, we hope foreign investors as well as non-resident Bangladeshis will come forward to invest in the country’s potential and fast-evolving economic sectors, and thus, will make an important contribution to the national economy.