Thursday, January 17, 2019 | ePaper

MCCI seeks policy reforms in proposed budget

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Chattogram Bureau :
Hailing the national budget for fiscal year 2018-19, the Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) urged the government to put concentration on certain policy reforms, simplification of  taxation, ease of doing business, infrastructure as well to materialize the vision.
"Bangladesh's economy is progressing well, but below its true potential," opined MCCI, saying inadequate infrastructure and shortage of power and energy are now major impediments to the actual growth of the economy.
In a post budget reaction, the trade body said: "We applaud the Finance Minister for considering the national development goals and vision objectives while preparing the budget and proposing measures to uphold the country's graduation to a developing country status, boosting economic growth, collect revenue, reduce poverty, provide necessary protection to local industries, and widen the prevailing safety net for freedom fighters and other deserving groups for improving the economic condition of the people."
It said there is no alternative to raising the level of private investment including foreign direct investment (FDI) if Bangladesh is to confirm the status of developing country by 2021. MCCI appreciated the 7.65 per cent growth in GDP against targeted 7.40 per cent in this fiscal year and the target of 7.80 per cent in the upcoming fiscal year.
The chamber appreciates the allocation of Taka 173,000 crore for the annual development programme (ADP) for FY19, which is 16.59 per cent higher than the revised ADP (Taka 148,381 crore). "A higher allocation in the ADP is needed to fulfill our development goals, but MCCI would like to urge the government to take necessary measures to ensure efficient and effective spending of the ADP funds."The proposed investment in human resources development will help improving the quality of people's lives and create better employment opportunities, noted MCCI.
. The Chamber lauded the special allocation for the advancement of women by allocating Taka 100 crore for "Women Entrepreneurship Fund" and Taka 25 crore for "Women Development Special Fund", allocating Taka 100 crore for "Skill Development Fund", allocating Taka 300 crore for managing risks arising out of earthquakes, also allocating Taka 10 crore for NGO Foundation, Taka 250 crore for PKSF, and Taka 10 crore for SME Foundation as these organizations are playing key roles in alleviating poverty.

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