The Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCC&I) has called for a boost in investment for the industry sector. In particular, it laid emphasis on stepping up term lending in a significant way.
The organisation's just-published report based on an evaluation of the investment situation pertaining to October-December, 2012-13 fiscal, spells out an important suggestion for a marked increase in disbursement of term credits in the remainder of the current financial year.
It needs to be noted that in the second quarter of the fiscal, the industry sector grew by 9.47 percent like in the first quarter -- thanks to an improvement in power supply, according to MCCI. But to realise the potential for further growth the entrepreneurs need adequate term loan distribution within a policy frame of a greater credit flow to the private sector as well as rolling back reduced import of capital machinery.
As a matter of fact, unless energy deficit is worked off and inadequacies of infrastructure in general are addressed along with anomalies in the regulatory mechanisms, we won't be able to make the desired headway in the industry sector. A tall order maybe, given the current political scenario and the level of accountability of the government agencies, but it surely needs to be delivered on if we want to further increase the share of industry sector in the GDP.
What gives us hope is the fact that among the South Asian economies, Bangladesh's achievement in spite of a world economy meltdown has been remarkable. A UN study has found that in competitive terms, Bangladesh's economy has fared very well.
Thirty-five percent reduction in imports, however, may not have been an unmixed blessing. And, the appreciation in Taka value vis-a-vis dollar poses a problem of export prices being less competitive. Policy planners need to watch out. The coming months are going to be crucial for Bangladesh in so many ways.