BIDA invites S’pore to invest in power, logistics sectors

Dhaka,  Thu,  21 September 2017
Published : 10 Jul 2017, 22:31:47

BIDA invites S’pore to invest in power, logistics sectors

BIDA invites S’pore to invest in power, logistics sectors
FE Report

Bangladesh, with its deficiency in energy and infrastructure, has offered huge opportunities to Singapore to invest in the country's power and logistics sectors, officials said on Monday.

"Earlier our target was to increase the power generation capacity to 23,000 megawatts by the year 2021. Recently we have revised the target to 28,000 megawatts to meet the increasing demand", Executive Chairman of the Bangladesh Investment Development Authority Kazi M Aminul Islam said at a function in the capital.

"Such a scenario offers a lot of opportunities to the Singaporean investors to invest in the country's power sector", Mr Islam said while speaking to a high-level delegation of the Singapore Business Federation currently visiting the city.  

Noting that the Singaporean companies are mostly looking to invest in small and medium- sized power plants in Bangladesh, he also said these companies can think of investing in big power projects as well.

The Singaporean investors, present on the occasion, also complained about prevailing gas shortage in the country.

They said many of them face difficulties in getting gas connections from the relevant authority.

Replying to this observation, the BIDA Chairman said the prevailing energy crunch will eased by the year 2019 with the establishment of three Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) terminals.

"Once the energy shortage is solved, our next focus will be on strengthening of our trade logistics facilities", Mr Islam said.

"And this is another area where Singapore can invest a lot given its rich experience and strength in this particular field", he added.

Business people present at the event also pointed out that the facilities at the Chittagong port are not up to the mark.   

"Quality infrastructure is essential for trade facilitation. The efficiency of Chittagong Port has to be raised", Mr Islam, who is also a former Secretary to the government, said.

"However, a lot of improvements will take place in this regard when the Payra port becomes operational", he added.

Earlier, a detailed presentation on the present investment scenario and further investment scopes in Bangladesh was delivered by BIDA officials.

The keynote presentation found that although most of the investment in Bangladesh is coming to telecommunication, textiles, banking and power sector, there are scopes for more foreign investment in energy, ICT and pharmaceuticals.     

The presentation found that apart from the country's young, dynamic workforce, Bangladesh's strategic location can give the foreign investors access to a market of 3 billion people living in the surrounding region.

"Gas and petroleum are the two best sectors to invest in Bangladesh due to the incentives given by the government in these areas", said Asif Ibrahim, Vice Chairman of Newage Group.

"Meanwhile, there is also a scope for joint collaboration in energy efficiency and information technology between Bangladesh and Singapore", Mr Ibrahim, who is a former President of Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said.
Editor : A.H.M Moazzem Hossain
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