Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed said the government is committed to incorporating disaster risk reduction in all national policies that will promote safer investments and resilient markets.
This will enhance Bangladesh's competitiveness and sustainability in the global market, Ahmed added.
He spoke at the opening ceremony of the 'First Bangladesh Resilience Dialogue of Private Sector' at Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel in Dhaka yesterday.
The two-day long dialogue is a follow-up of the third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) that was held in Japan in March 2015.
UNDP Bangladesh in partnership with the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), Business Initiative Leading Development (BUILD) and the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industries (FBCCI) is organising the dialogue.
It will focus on creating resilient businesses that will have disaster safe investments, establishment, production and markets.
Areas like business opportunities in disaster risk reduction through innovation and an enabling environment for businesses to adopt disaster safe approaches will also be covered during the dialogue.
Abul Kalam Azad, principal secretary of the Prime Minister's Office, attended the opening ceremony of the dialogue.
Pauline Tamesis, country director of UNDP Bangladesh, said that resilient businesses are not only essential for competing in the global markets but it also secures livelihoods and buying power of Bangladeshi people, which in turn has market benefits.
Bangladeshi entrepreneurs are known for their innovation, which is our biggest asset to build a resilient nation, said Asif Ibrahim, chairman of BUILD.
“However, it requires regulatory simplification and appropriate incentives, and capacity building both for large corporate firms and especially SMEs,” added Ibrahim, who also chairs the Asia UNESCAP Asia-Pacific Sustainable Business Network on DRR.
Shamika Sirimanne, director of UNESCAP, said that sustainable development will not be achieved unless the private sector is adequately protected and plays a significant leadership role in building resilience.