Execution of mega projects won’t affect economy, says PM

| Updated: June 19, 2022 18:38:34

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Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday said the economy and foreign exchange reserves of the country will not face any adverse impact due to the implementation of the mega projects.

The prime minister also said all projects were undertaken following proper assessments.

“Proper financial and economic analyses were done before the mega projects were taken by the present government. So, there is no possibility of the adverse impact caused by the execution of these projects,” she said while replying to a starred question from Jatiya Party lawmaker Fakhrul Imam (Mymensingh-8), reports UNB.

Noting that most of the mega projects were undertaken with foreign loans or grants, she said these are soft loans with a comparatively lower interest rate, long repayment tenure and long grace period.

“Moreover, no major complexity was noticed in the case of releasing the loan funds by the development agencies,” said Hasina.

She mentioned details about the implementation progress and current status of 16 mega projects including Padma Multipurpose Bridge Construction Project, Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant and Rampal 1320-megawatt friendship super thermal power project.

The other projects include the Matarbari 1200-MW ultra-supercritical coal-fired power project, Dhaka Mass Rapid Transit Development, LNG Terminal Construction and Gas Pipeline Installation Project, Payra Deep Sea Port, Padma Bridge Rail Link Project, and Construction of Single Line Dual Gauge Track from Dohajari to Cox’s Bazar via Ramu, from Ramu to Gundum, close to Myanmar.

The remaining mega projects are Payra Thermal Power Plant, the Construction of a Broad-gauge rail line from Bhanga Junction (Faridpur) to Payra port and Kuakata via Barishal, Cox’s Bazar Airport Development Project, Establishment of Economic Zones, Ashrayan-2 Project, Multi-lane road tunnel under Karnaphuli River and SASEC Dhaka-Sylhet Corridor Road Development Project.

Hasina said huge employments have been generated and many backward and forward linkage industries and businesses have developed during the implementation of the projects.

“So, actually the country’s progress is getting accelerated directly instead of getting hindered through the projects,” she said.

“Besides, since the projects (except Padma Multipurpose Bridge Construction and Payra Deep Sea Port Project) are getting finance from foreign sources, the project-related import cost would not put any adverse impact on the reserves of foreign currencies in the country,” said the PM.

The projects are being undertaken as per the need to continue the trend of the country’s development in economic, social and all other sectors, she went on.

Answering a question from Jatiya Party lawmaker Rustum Ali Faraji, the PM said the inflow of remittance started returning to the normal trend of the pre-Covid-19 situation.

She said the inflow of remittance declined slightly to US$ 17.30 billion in the 10 months from July to April in 2021-2022 fiscal, which is 16.25 per cent less compared to the same period of the previous fiscal year.

She said the average inflow of remittance was US$ 13.42 billion in the first months of 2019-20, 2018-2019 and 2017-2018 fiscals. So, it is seen that the amount of remittance received in the first ten months of the current fiscal year is 28.91 per cent higher than the average inflow of remittance received in the same period in the pre-Covid-19 three fiscal years, she added.

So, it can be said that the inflow of remittance has not dipped, rather the inflow started returning to the normal trend of the pre-pandemic period.

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