More than 300 government officials, business leaders, investors and entrepreneurs will participate in Bangladesh Economic Forum in Dubai
A number of UAE business groups are set to invest $10 billion into Bangladesh, according to data compiled by Bangladesh Economic Forum, which takes place in Dubai on Sunday.
More than 300 government officials, business leaders, investors and entrepreneurs will participate in the day-long international investment conference, aimed at strengthening the flow of trade and investment between the UAE and Bangladesh.
Bangladeshis are major investors in the UAE economy where more than 50,000 businesses are owned and successfully run by Bangladeshi expatriates who employ more than 150,000 people collectively.
Salman Fazlur Rahman, advisor to Bangladesh Prime Minister for Private Industry and Investment will deliver a keynote address at the Forum.
He is leading a 20-member government delegation comprising of officials of Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA), Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority (BEZA) and Bangladesh Hi-Tech Park Authority (BHTPA).
As many as 20 fresh investment projects are being prepared to be tabled at Bangladesh Economic Forum where investors are expected to meet and discuss their projects with Rahman and the visiting Bangladesh official delegation, a statement said.
The Forum takes place as the Bangladesh economy needs massive foreign and domestic investment to create employment and ensure sustainable development, with the UAE and the GCC countries being targeted as a major source for investment.
“Bangladesh is more than ready to receive a higher level of foreign direct investment (FDI) that jumped 69 percent last year to $3.61 billion,” Rahman said.
“We have seen large investments coming from China, Japan and the United States. We believe, investors from the GCC countries, especially Saudi Arabia and the UAE, should take advantage of the lower cost of investment, operations and higher return on investment in Bangladesh.
“We are developing 100 economic zones and 28 hi-tech parks in Bangladesh for investors to set up their operations and benefit from the lowest labour cost and very low operational costs. Our brothers and investor friends from the UAE and Gulf should benefit from the growing opportunities in Bangladesh.”
He said $10 billion worth of investment has been pledged by UAE investors into Bangladesh’s energy, ports, power and infrastructure sectors that will help fuel the economic growth of Bangladesh.
Bangladesh and the UAE signed four memoranda of understanding (MoUs) on establishing a port, industrial park, supply and setting up a liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal, power plants, and a special economic zone in Bangladesh, during a three-day visit by Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to the UAE in February.
“These investments will strengthen the bilateral relationship between Bangladesh and the UAE and will deepen our economic relations to a strategic partnership level,” said Muhammad Imran, Bangladesh Ambassador to the UAE.
Shaikh Abdul Karim, an investment advisor and member of Bangladesh Economic Forum, added: “As a private advisory group, Bangladesh Economic Forum is ready to bridge the gap between Bangladeshi project owners and UAE investors as well as the gap between the public sector investment promotion agencies and the investor community and help support all investment projects."