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10,000 acres to be arranged for industrial plots across the country over 3 years

images (2)The government has set a priority to arrange over 10,000 acres of land for industrial plots across the country in the next three years, sources have said.

The government will set up five special economic zones and seven specialised industrial areas across the country during the period, sources at the ministry of industry have said.

Industries Minister Amir Hossain Amu told the FE that deputy commissioners at different districts had identified government or khash land for the industrial plots following letters issued by the ministry to that end.

Adequate pieces of land had been identified for the plots in Sirajganj, Mongla, Ashuganj, Nilphamari and Manikganj, the industries minister said.

Besides, work was going on to establish specialised economic zones at Mirrershorai and Anwara in Chittagong, Sherpur in Moulvibazar, Shubarnachar in Noakhali and in Feni, as the Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority (BEZA) had already conducted its preliminary study on those sites, he said.

The government would soon begin a drive for land acquisition to set up the economic zones, he said.

“Our Prime Minister is very serious about setting up industrial parks. So the next budget will must see some allocations for that purpose,” the minister said.

Mr Amu disclosed that the industries ministry had asked Bangladesh Small and Cottage Industries Corporation (BSCIC) to provide a list of its unused industrial plots.

“If we find some plots unused under the BSCIC, we’ll allocate those for new entrepreneurs,” he added.

Besides, a plan was being drawn up to utilise the land of state-owned sugar mills remaining idle for more than nine months a year, Mr Amu said.

Earlier last week top businessmen urged the government to add an impetus to industrial land acquisition and develop SEZs as early as possible.

In a meeting at the Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Dhaka (MCCI), Apex Group Chairman Syed Manzur Elahi said industrial plants were being set up using farm land. “So, we need industrial zones immediately,” he added.

Kazi Akram Uddin Ahmed, president of the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry, said industrial zones could be set up on BSCIC land.

Former FBCCI president AK Azad said setting up industrial zones would not be enough, electricity and gas connections would also have to be ensured.

The Bangladesh Economic Zone Bill 2010 was passed by the parliament on July 20, 2010.

According to the bill, there will be four types of economic zones – economic zone for local or foreign nationals, private economic zone for local or expatriate Bangladeshis or foreigners, government economic zones and specialised economic zones for specialised industries-to be set up on any private or public-private partnership (PPP) or government initiative.

The economic zones will accommodate textile, ceramic, pharmaceutical, paint, steel and food processing plants.

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Source: Financial Express

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