05/07/2012: FDI inflow in Bangladesh increased last year

FDI inflow in Bangladesh increased last year

Bangladesh received foreign direct investment (FDI) of $1.13 billion last year, the highest ever investment from overseas, according to the World Investment Report (WIR), 2012 of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).The amount is 24.42 per cent more than that in the previous year, the report said and pointed out that the increase was also higher than the average 23 percent worldwide growth of FDI. The country received $910.33 million FDI in 2010.

The previous record amount of FDI was US$1.08 billion in 2008 with increased flow of investment in the country's fast growing telecommunication sector.Like many countries across the world, the report was released in Bangladesh Thursday that focuses on the trend in FDI worldwide, at the regional and country levels and suggests measures to improve its contribution to development.

Releasing the report at the Board of Investment (BoI) in the city, BoI Chairman SA Samad said the flow of FDI would increase further if the government follows a more stable tax policy."Frequent changes in tax policy hinder flow of FDI," the BoI chief said without elaborating. Samad said the country needs to fetch more FDI for development as the flow of foreign assistance is declining for external reasons.He said the BoI has been providing necessary assistances to investors to increase FDI.

Speaking on the occasion, Energy Adviser to the Prime Minister Dr Taufiq-E- Elahi Chowdhury said the country is going ahead despite having limitations for both internal and external reasons. BoI member Nabhash Chandra Mandal said the FDI increased significantly last year after 2008. Professor Dr M Ismail Hossain of the Department of Economics of Jahangirnagar University, who prepared the Bangladesh part of the report on behalf of the BoI, said the trend in FDI flow improved last year, but it would take time to expatiate on the flow further. According to the report, garment sector attracted the highest amount of $271 million last year followed by banking sector with $249.3 million and energy sector with $238.2 million. The telecommunication got only $18.09 million.

Source: The Daily Star, Dhaka