Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed yesterday criticised the Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA) for lack of coordination among its stakeholders and said harmonisation is a must to improve the ease of doing business.
“Why is the coordination meeting of the special panel being held two years after its formation?” he asked at the first meeting of the BIDA's steering committee for ease of doing business at the InterContinental Hotel in Dhaka.
“Why is there no representative from the private sector?”
Businesses should be included in the steering committee as they suffer the most for the complexities in the process for doing business and they know the problems better than anyone, Ahmed said.
“Our businessmen are doing great and they are helping the economy grow faster despite all the hurdles in doing business. We should not blame our businessmen. They are the main contributor to our economy.”
The minister said Bangladesh has done well in all social and economic indicators. Still the country lags behind others because of the flaws in business environment.
“Foreign investors come to pour money into Bangladesh, but they go back after visiting the country because of poor road and business climate. So, the BIDA should take the main responsibility to improve the ease of doing business.”
Finance Minister AMA Muhith said the faster growth of the economy indicates that it is getting easier to do business. “But still some problems are there.”
“We have to create a system so that investors do not have to go door to door of the government offices. We have to go for technological improvement in all sectors to ensure that.”
Lack of technological improvement in the activities of ministries and authorities is the main reason behind the slow growth in the ease of doing business, said Nasrul Hamid, state minister for power, energy and mineral resources.
A system should be created so that people can complete the process online that is needed to start a new business, Hamid said. “It will cut hassle and corruption.”
The situation in government offices is getting better but it is not perfect yet, said Md Abul Kalam Azad, principal coordinator for SDG affairs at the Prime Minister's Office.
The business climate in government offices should improve, said Kazi M Aminul Islam, executive chairman of the BIDA.
“We are hopeful to introduce an effective one-stop service for the sake of better business environment.”
Shipping Minister Shajahan Khan, Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal and secretaries of several ministries were also present at the meeting.