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Efforts on to unlock potentials of blue economy

  • Published at 12:26 am September 29th, 2016
Efforts on to unlock potentials of blue economy
As part of the process, different ministries and state-owned research firms exchanged their views on the potential and prospects of the blue economy at an inter-ministerial workshop on Blue Economy organised by the Planning Division in the NEC conference yesterday. During their deliberations, they suggested to follow the method of other countries that have already developed their blue economy in tapping vast Bay resources. Private sector might be encouraged to invest for exploiting seabed resources, they said. But the country still lacks knowledge, technology and skills to explore the resources of the Bay. Presiding over the workshop, Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal said after winning maritime boundary from India and Myanmar, the prospect of the country’s blue economy expands. He said: “We have no time to wait. For seizing the potential of the blue economy, we need to gather experiences of other countries that has already developed their blue economy.” He said countries like China, Korea, Australia and Sicily have developed their blue economy and Bangladesh can get knowledge from those countries. Education Secretary Sohrab Hossain said Bangladesh lacks preparation to utilise and protect the resources of seas and oceans. “However, we have taken a number of initiatives like maritime course in universities to build skilled manpower in this regard.” Senior Research Fellow at the Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies Nazneen Ahmed said: “We need to make massive research about the blue economy once to tap into the resources of the Bay of Bengal.” She recommended involving private sector in the development of maritime resources. Earlier, Bangladesh and India signed a memorandum of understanding on blue economy during the visit of Indian Premier Narendra Modi in Dhaka. Bangladesh resolved maritime boundary dispute with Myanmar in 2012 and with India in 2014 and got the sovereign authority of 0.12 million square kilometres in the Bay of Bengal. About 1.4 billion people live along the Bay of Bengal coastline while 30 million people in Bangladesh directly or indirectly dependent on marine resources.