• Friday, Oct 30, 2020
  • Last Update : 01:18 pm

Post-Covid-19 era: Consistent policy regime, automation crucial for attracting FDIs

  • Published at 09:19 pm September 26th, 2020

The regional connectivity, with opening up economic corridors, might bring more FDI

To attract Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in the post-Covid-19 era, experts on Saturday called for a stable, consistent policy regime, as well as a wide range of one-stop services (OSS) and automation in providing services.

They also said Bangladesh lagged far behind in creating a business-friendly environment for global investors, which is due to lack of automation, and administrative barriers.

They made the recommendations at a webinar titled “FDI Situation in Bangladesh: Problems and Prospects by Covid-19” organized by the Economic Development Research Organization (Edro).

Discussants of the webinar demanded holistic approaches for developing quality governance and competitive tax measures to facilitate hassle free foreign investment, automation in customs clearance process, and integrated port and logistic infrastructure for enhancing cross border and regional connectivity.

“Our trade policy is highly protected and trade-to-GDP ratio is falling as we are concentrated on the domestic market rather than the export market,’’ said Ahsan H Mansur, executive director, Policy Research Institute (PRI).

"Bangladesh’s FDI-to-GDP ratio is about 5.90%, which is the least, compared to other countries even though we lag behind Bhutan. We must review the existing trade regimes for making it functional that will help to attract relocation of industries as well," said the economist.

He advocated for an inclusive and diverse range of one-stop services (OSS) i.e., automation, paperless trade measures, etc, to attract more FDI in the post-Covid-19 era.

Meanwhile, researchers and other economists also called for policy reforms and consistency for luring investment.

Nazneen Ahmed, senior research fellow, Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies (BIDS), shed light on policy inconsistency that must be addressed for facilitating long-term investment.

Covid-19 is now shifting the whole supply chain system from traditional to digital and e-commerce based, and the future investment scenario would change considering the integrated port, logistics, and other allied services facilities, she remarked.

 “We must go for massive policy reforms, including the foreign exchange and logistics regulation with a projection of future policy changes,’’ said MS Siddiqui, vice president of the International Business Forum of Bangladesh (IBFB).

He stressed for skilled manpower development through training and lifelong learning.

“Yet, we couldn’t attract much FDI despite having a $30 billion plan in our prospective plans,” said Md Mazadul Hoque, a banker and economic analyst.

“Covid-19 along with the long-standing US-China trade war pushed businesses to relocate but Bangladesh is yet to prepare to take it while competitive economies like Vietnam, Cambodia, Indonesia and India are preparing to grab the opportunities of relocation," he added.

The regional connectivity, with opening up economic corridors, might bring more FDI.

In 2019, Bangladesh received $2.87 billion in foreign direct investment (FDI), down by 20.46% compared to $3.61 billion in 2018.

blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail