Major development works like construction of connectivity roads, embankments and bridges and supply of drinking water for commissioning the first phase of Mirsarai Economic Zone have almost been completed.
Government high officials on a spot inspection said the phase one of the economic zone in a 550-acre area would generate 100,000 employments after its successful completion.
Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority (BEZA) has chosen Powerpac-gasmin-Eastwest JV as developer for the zone and would sign an agreement on March 22.
Around 70 per cent of works on connecting roads, 75 per cent of embankments and bridges and 80 per cent of safe drinking water through pipeline have been mostly completed so far.
In the second phase, two EZs would be established on 1300 acres of land. Already, feasibility, and social and environmental-impact studies have been completed in the second phase. The BEZA has also obtained clearance from the directorate of environment.
BEZA has acquired Khas land measuring around 12,000 acres in Mirsarai outside the port city so far and has yet to acquire any of public land. But it would need to acquire some of the public land against proper compensation.
The government will provide direct compensation to the local people on the acquired land so that they do not face any unusual intervention by middlemen.
"The process relating to land-acquisition compensation should be resolved smoothly," said Abdul Kalam Azad, chief coordinator (Sustainable Development Goal) at the Prime Minister's Office (PMO), while visiting the Mirsarai Economic Zone site Thursday.
He also underscored the need for planting trees, ensuring proper power supply to the EZ and its adjacent area for successful implementation of economic zones.
State minister for power, energy and mineral resources Nasrul Hamid, who was also on the tour, assured of ensuring power supply to the EZ.
Senior secretary of the ministry of land Mesbahul Alam, power secretary Dr Ahmed Kaikaus, environment secretary (in charge) Ishtiaq Ahmed, shipping secretary Ashok Madhob Roy and executive chairman of Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority (BEZA) Paban Chowdhury visited the Mirsarai and Feni Economic Zone, Chinese Economic and industrial zones in Anwara 1 and 2 belts, Bashkhali, Matarbari coal-fired power project, Sonadia and Cox's Bazaar that day.
The BEZA chief said the authority has been trying to bring two-three investors immediately as a pilot project in the Mirsarai special economic hub.
"Already 33KV power line has been made available in the area," he said.
The senior secretary of the ministry of land said the government is amending the relevant land policy to categorise compensation for acquisition of large volume of acquired land and small amount of land.
Chief coordinator of the PMO Mr Azad said the government has dream to generate employment of some 10 million people in this area by establishing EZs.
BEZA is working to establish an industrial city spanning Sonagazi Upazila of nearby Feni district and Mirsarai of Chittagong on 30,000 acres land.
The hub is 10 kilometres from the Dhaka-Chittagong highway and 65 kms from the commercial capital, Chittagong. BEZA has already invited international tender for master plan for an integrated industrial city. Work on connecting road from Barotakia (Abu Torab) to Mirsarai EZ at an estimated cost Tk 1.23 billion is going on in full swing. Gas-pipeline project for the EZ, involving Tk 2.66 billion, embankment construction project at Tk 11.83 billion, 230KV grid station, port-and rail-construction projects for the EZ are also in progress.