DHAKA, March 23, 2018 (BSS) – Extending the credit to the country’s people for LDC graduation to a developing nation, Finance Minister AMA Muhith today said Bangladesh needs to create more employment opportunities alongside ensuring proper use of resources in the coming days to keep up the momentum of progress.
“We’ve to create more employments because the current state of growth in employment is not very welcoming…we’ve to create more employment opportunities,” he said while addressing a discussion of an international workshop.
Economic Relations Division (ERD) Organised the workshop on “Bangladesh Graduation from LDC Status: Opportunities and Way Forward” at a city hotel.
ERD Secretary Kazi Shofiqul Azam presented a keynote paper in the workshop.
PM’s Principal Secretary Md Nojibur Rahman, Principal Coordinator on SDG Affairs at the Prime Minister’s Office Md Abul Kalam Azad, Foreign Secretary Shahidul Haque, Commerce Secretary Shubhashish Bose, UN-OHRLLS high representative Fekitamoeloa Katoa ‘Utoikamanu, UN Assistant Secretary General and UNDP regional director for Asia and the Pacific Haoliang Xu, PKSF chairman Dr Qazi Kholiquzzaman Ahmad, FBCCI President Md Shafiul Islam Mohiuddin and MCCI President Nihad Kabir spoke at the workshop as panelists.
USAID Bangladesh Mission Head Janina Jaruzelski, BIDA Executive Chairman Kazi M Aminul Islam, Roland Mollerus of UN CDP spoke as designated discussants from the audience.
Highlighting the way forward of Bangladesh after LDC graduation, the Finance Minister said Bangladesh would not be in a difficulty in attracting additional investment. “Now resources will be available to Bangladesh and we’ve to make sure that the use of resources is proper,”
Muhith went on saying, “Sometimes, when you get more resources, you tend to be a little bit relaxed on the use of these resources. But, this is one of the areas in which we’ve done well and we’ve to continue to do well that the use of resources is proper.”
Terming climate change as a very important problem for Bangladesh, he said the government has been adopting many measures of its own in order to tackle this climate change impacts. “We’ve to continue with that.”
Noting that Bangladesh has been doing very well in the areas of social indicators for a pretty long period of time, Muhith said, “I believe, we’ve benefited from it very richly. So, we should continue with those efforts…we should continue to do better in the social indicators.”
Earlier in his inaugural speech, the minister said the graduation of Bangladesh to a developing nation from the LDC status has been possible mainly because of the excellent performance of its people from all walks of life.
PM’s Principal Secretary Md Nojibur Rahman said the leadership of Bangladesh is now much more focused under dynamic leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and now it would be prime goal of the government to convert the challenges into opportunities to steer ahead the nation.
Principal Coordinator on SDG Affairs at the Prime Minister’s Office Md Abul Kalam Azad said after the LDC graduation, Bangladesh’s competitiveness in export will increase as well as the cost of fund while the participation cost of the country in different forum will be increased.
He also observed that in the days forward, the major driving force of the economy would be the private sector as the Prime Minister termed the private sector as the ‘Engine of Growth’.
PKSF chairman Qazi Kholiquzzaman Ahmad said the outlook for Bangladesh is very brighter in the days to come as given the current scenario, Bangladesh would not have to wait for official graduation from LDC by 2024, rather it would be made possible by the country itself by 2021.
The eminent economist also underscored the need for further improving the implementation of budget and development projects side by side focusing more on improving the both-way multilateral and bilateral partnerships.
FBCCI President Shafiul Islam said although the whole of the country is celebrating and rejoicing the LDC graduation, but, there is no scope to be complacent. “We must not be complacent. We’ve many things to do. Our journey has just begun.”
MCCI President Nihad Kabir said there is a need to put together a team of excellent negotiators with all of the country’s development partners to make sure that the country’s transition is smooth.
“We need to prepare for fundamental structural reforms in our economy…it’s time to think about structural change,” she added.
Haoliang Xu underscored the need for addressing inequality, further improving quality of governance, further raising the investment ratio to GDP, overcoming the middle-income trap by Bangladesh in the comings years.
He also hoped that Bangladesh’s transition would be smoother and faster opining that the country cannot afford to make any mistake in becoming a developed country by 2041.