April 12, 2021

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Bangladesh is an important place for US trade and investment: Prime Minister

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has termed Bangladesh as a promising destination for US trade and investment and offered large investments to its companies in a special economic zone and a high-tech park.In a message sent during the virtual inauguration of the US-Bangladesh Business Council today, he said, “We are proposing to invest in a special economic zone to facilitate the setting up of factories for American manufacturing companies.”Noting that Bangladesh is now setting up 26 high-tech parks for the ICT industry with domestic and foreign investment, he said, “We are proposing to US companies to invest in the ICT sector by

He said it was important that both countries had adequate policy support for further expansion of bilateral trade.

Sheikh Hasina said Bangladesh’s sustainable economic growth, fast-growing domestic market and growing connectivity with a huge regional market of 4 billion consumers have made the country a promising destination for US trade and investment.

“We are providing sustainable physical infrastructure, legal and financial benefits to foreign investors,” he said. My government is setting up 100 ‘Special Economic Zones’ to accelerate industrialization in Bangladesh. And the United States has always stood by us as a strong partner in our country’s path to democracy and development. It is the largest destination for our exports, the largest source of foreign direct investment, our long-term development partner and an important source of technology and training.

Bangladesh exports about ৮ 6 billion worth of goods to the United States, 60 per cent of which are ready-made garments, the Prime Minister said, adding, “Our exporters pay an average of 18 per cent duty.” We purchase significant quantities of industrial raw materials and consumer goods from the United States, such as yarn, soybeans and wheat. All these products are imported duty free in Bangladesh. As Bangladesh’s dependence on foreign aid has significantly decreased, so has the need for foreign direct investment to create employment for millions of young people in our country.

The Prime Minister further said that our vision for Digital Bangladesh is an integral part of 2021. In this regard, I would like to thank my ICT Advisor Sajib Wazed for his assistance in planning and implementing the vision of a modern Bangladesh capable of using technology to ensure accountability and transparency in government work and accelerate economic development.

He said Bangladesh today exports more than িয়ন 1 billion worth of ICT products to 60 countries around the world. Among these countries, the United States is the largest exporter of ICT products. According to USAID’s Private Sector Assessment 2019 for Bangladesh, the ICT industry will reach about ৫ 5 billion by 2025.

Expressing satisfaction over the participation of US and Bangladesh business leaders in the inaugural event of the US-Bangladesh Business Council, the Prime Minister said the participation of the US business community was an expression of their growing desire to do business and invest in Bangladesh. I hope this will help us further expand our economic partnership between the two countries.

The Prime Minister said, “My Government will continue to support the work of the US-Bangladesh Business Council in the days to come.”

Sheikh Hasina said the journey of the Council is taking place at a time when we are celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of the glorious independence of Bangladesh and the birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

He added that Bangladesh gained its independence in 1971 at the cost of the lives of 3 million martyrs and the dignity of 200,000 women through a nine-month bloody war.

He said Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman laid the foundation of a prosperous Bangladesh on the rubble of a war-torn country.

In this context, he said, “I have undertaken the unfinished task of realizing the golden Bengal of his dream free from poverty, exploitation and economic inequality.”

“Over the past decade, we have made significant progress in the socio-economic field,” he said. The strength of Bangladesh’s economy is now recognized worldwide.

“Even during the Kovid-19 epidemic, our economy has shown great resilience,” he said.

The Prime Minister said Bangladesh received a final recommendation from the United Nations last February to transition from a least developed country. Now Bangladesh is moving towards achieving the goal of becoming a high-income developed and prosperous country by 2041.

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