It’s an important aspect for our economy, our development, our industries, and people’s livelihood. Bangladesh has just recently announced it’s annual budget for the fiscal year 2019-2020.

During the fiscal year 2017-18, Bangladesh had attained a 7.86% GDP growth. Bangladesh government has set the target of 8.2% gross domestic product growth for the next fiscal year.

World Bank kept Bangladesh’s growth rate for the outgoing fiscal year unchanged at 7.3% with strong infrastructure spending, private investment and domestic consumption. The government has proposed to hike the export duty on rice bran from 10% to 25% to discourage export as there is a huge demand for it in the local market.

For entrepreneurs and startups it has allocated about 100 crore ($12 million). VAT exemption has been provided for outlet businesses which are run by women entrepreneurs. *

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This is a beneficial step especially for the young entrepreneurs who want to start businesses but due to the financial regulations and tough entry procedures don’t have access to necessary funding.

Meanwhile, the Association of Mobile Telecom Operators of Bangladesh (AMTOB) in a budget reaction termed the incremental supplementary duty on mobile phone use as a “suicidal” decision. *

Considering the critical role mobile phones play to connect the most rural parts to have access to the world, this policy will be a set back for the progress and development of telecommunication infrastructure.

Positive news for the agricultural sector and the automobile sector as the import duty for agricultural machinery and motor parts has been reduced significantly. This allows the industry to acquire the necessary machinery and tools to develop the sector.

For the development of infrastructure such as roads and ports there has been allocation of funds to further develop this sector, with the (South Asia Sub regional Economic Cooperation) road connectivity projects one and two are being implemented in order to be connected with the global transport network to reap the benefits of globalization.

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Development of necessary infrastructure and facilities at sea ports are also in progress. A plan for construction of the Bay-Terminal at the Chittagong port at a cost of Tk17,000 crore ($2040 million) has been undertaken. The handling capacity of the Chittagong port will be enhanced in the next financial year from 2.8 million TEUs to 3 million TEUs. *