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Saudi businessmen to invest in SEZ

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Economic Reporter :
Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed on Wednesday invited Saudi Arabian businessmen to invest in special economic zone taking the opportunity of Bangladesh's investment friendly facilities.
He made the call at a business meeting with the visiting 21-member high level business delegation of Saudi Arabia in a city hotel organized by the FBCCI.
Citing the initiative of the Prime Minister of developing 100 Special Economic Zones (SEZs) in the country, the commerce minister said: "Saudi Arabian businessmen could invest here as Bangladesh government is offering special facilities to the foreign investors."
He said foreign entrepreneurs are getting cent percent investment opportunity in Bangladesh. "Foreign investors could bring back their investment with profit any time and the government has secured the investment by law."
Under the 7th five year plan, Tofail said, the government has taken special initiative to increase the export items along with expanding export market.
The commerce minister noted bilateral trade is remained stagnant at $ 800 million, but it could be boosted further if businessmen of both the countries make steps forward.
FBCCI leaders, members of business delegation and high officials, among others, also spoke on the occasion with FBCCI President Shafiul Islam Mahiuddin in the chair.
First Vice President of FBCCI Sheikh Fazle Fahim, Vice President Mr. Md. Muntakim Ashraf and the Directors attended.
Moshabab Abdulla Alkahtani, President of International Marketing Investment Company Group Ltd. led the 21 member high-powered Saudi delegation comprising of the representatives of Construction, Real estate, Construction Materials, Agriculture, Tourism, Food & Beverage etc.
After achieving the 'Millennium Development Goal (MDG)' successfully, Bangladesh is heading towards achieving the 'Sustainable Development Goal (SDG)', the minister added.
Bangladesh is also transforming from Agriculture based growth to industry-service oriented growth arena. Bangladesh is now one of the fastest growing countries of the world, and will be the 28th strongest economy by 2030, he hoped.
The Minister also said that, country's export growth is increasing very fast which now stands at 38 billion US $. We can reduce the Trade gap with Saudi Arabia by diversifying our export basket and increasing the quantity of export, minister said. This visit of Saudi delegation will further develop the trade and investment between the two friendly countries, he hoped.
Golam Moshi, Bangladesh Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Kazi M. Aminul Islam, Executive Chairman of Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA) and Sheikh Fazle Fahim, First Vice President of FBCCI also spoke on the occasion.
Addressing the meeting FBCCI President Md. Shafiul Islam (Mohiuddin) briefed the delegation on the current economic development of the country. He also mentioned that Bangladesh has developed hugely in infrastructure, communication and some other sectors. The FBCCI Chief mentioned that Saudi Arabia is one of the leading development partners of Bangladesh, particularly through generous hosting of a significant number of Bangladeshi expatriates.  
Mohiuddin said that, Saudi Arabia has become a major source of f financing and economic aid to Bangladesh, and the country has also become an important trade and investment partner.
The FBCCI President expressed his happiness that in the last decade, trade has been gradually increasing and today our total two-way trade stands at US $ 790 million. So far Saudi Arabia has been invested in the banking and Finance sector of Bangladesh, which could be expanded to other potential sectors, Mohiuddin mentioned.
He also invited the Saudi Investors to invest in the EZ's of Bangladesh. The private sector leader mentioned about the 'Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between FBCCI and Council of Saudi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CSCCI) at Riyadh IN 2005.
Mohiuddin said that, there is a huge market of Bangladesh RMG, Light Engineering products, Furniture, Plastic Goods, Ceramic Products, Frozen Fish, Halal Foods, Footwear and Jute Goods in Saudi Arabia. The visit of Saudi delegation will open a golden era of expanding bilateral trade and investment, the FBCCI President observed.

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