DHAKA, Feb 1, 2023 (BSS) - Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today told Parliament that the country has received US$ 10,493 million remittances till December of the current fiscal year.
"Till December of the current fiscal, over US$ 10,493 million was remitted to the country," she said while responding to a tabled question from Jatiya Party lawmaker Md. Rustum Ali Faraji from Pirojpur-3 constituency.
Mentioning that Bangladesh is a high remittance receiving country, the Leader of the House said despite the global Covid-19 pandemic, the remittances received in the financial years 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 were US$ 24.77 and US$ 21.03 billion respectively.
Highlighting various steps taken in the last few years to increase the flow of remittances, she said that workers have been encouraged to send remittances through proper banking channels which helped increasing the flow of remittances by sending more skilled workers.
Besides, she said, the government has continued to give recognition through declaring commercial important persons and special citizens of the non-resident/expatriate Bangladeshi wage earners to encourage more remittances.
Replying to another tabled question from ruling party lawmaker Anwar Hossain Khan, the Prime Minister said discussions are on to produce hydro electricity from sea water.
Referring to the new concept of hydro power generation from sea water, she said that discussions are underway with all the companies that gave proposals in this regard.
She added: "If possible, feasibility study of hydro power generation at Matarbari, Maheshkhali or Banshkhali will be done".
The Premier said that in some countries in the world, electricity is generated by using the tides of the sea, which is costly and has not appeared as commercially viable.
She said, "There is currently no plan to set up such a power plant as it is costlier".
Mentioning that it is very costlier, she said that in future, if the cost of constructing such a power plant comes down, the plan of using the tides of the Bay of Bengal for power generation can be adopted by building a power plant.
In response to ruling party lawmaker Kazim Uddin Ahmed's question, the Prime Minister said that a record number of 11,13,374 workers have been employed abroad in 2022 due to the government's effective measures.
"Of them, the number of women workers is 105,466," she added.
She said that currently Bangladesh exports manpower to 168 countries and the government wanted to reduce manpower export dependency in Middle East countries.
"For that purpose, step is on to export manpower in Eastern Europe and Eastern Asian countries," she said.
Responding to another ruling party lawmaker Mahfuzur Rahman's question, she said that 1,558 bridges and 7,498 culverts have been constructed/reconstructed during the tenure of the present government.
She said, "Improvement of 908.49km road to four lanes or more is in progress. Out of this, 235.03 km of roads have already been made into four lanes or more."
In replying to the question of ruling party member AKM Rahmatullah, the Premier said 182,352 out of 187,290 valiant freedom fighters have been given digital certificates and 95,245 smart ID cards by the Ministry of Liberation War Affairs.