Bangladesh Consulate General, Dubai and Embassy of Bangladesh, UAE is relentlessly working to attract foreign direct investment in Bangladesh in the sectors like agro-based industry, tourism, food & allied product, power (electricity & solar), ceramics, pharmaceuticals and physical infrastructure, textile and wearing, banking telecommunication, computer software and IT. The total investment made by the UAE as of June 2011 stands at US$ 2.9 billion.
Bangladesh Economic Growth Projection
FY2009 to FY2014
Investment Climate Features in Bangladesh
(A) Investment Protection
The Foreign Private Investment (Promotion and Protection) Act 1980 provides protection for investment made in Bangladesh against expropriation and nationalization, equitable treatment, exile & profit and capital repatriation. In addition, Bilateral Investment Treaties are agreed with 28 countries.
(B) Investment Incentives
- Corporate tax holiday (outside EPZs): Five to Seven years for selected sectors
- Accelerated depreciation on cost of machinery for new industries in lieu of tax holiday
- Reduced corporate tax for 5-7 years in lieu of tax holiday and accelerated depreciation
- Avoidance of double taxation under DTT
- Tariff concession on import of capital machinery
- Tariff concession on import of raw materials of the export oriented industries
- Bonded warehousing facilities Cash incentives and export subsidies ranging from 5%-20% on the FOB value of selected products
- Funds for export promotion, export credit guarantee scheme, permission of domestic sale up to 20% by export oriented companies outside EPZs
- Remittance of royalty, technical know-how and TAfees
- Citizenship by investing minimum of US$ 5,00,000
- Permanent resident permits on investing US$ 75,00
(C) Board of Investment Services
- BOI is the principal agency for facilitating and promoting private investment. Its services included among others are:
- Pre-investment information, counselling and welcome (faster immigration) services
- Registration of foreign, joint-venture and local industrial projects
- Approval of foreign commercial offices
- Approving work permit of foreign nationals
- Facilitating import of raw materials and capital machinery etc
- Processing foreign borrowings
- Facilitating utility connections and industrial plots
- Approving remittance of royalty, technology transfer, technical know-how and technical assistance fees
- Listing PPP projects through private sector infrastructure committee.
(D) Investment in IT Sector in Bangladesh
Sector Opportunity: IT
The ICT is a fast developing sector in Bangladesh. Originally focused on distributing imported hardware, the industry has moved into developing software locally. Now the sector is exporting to more than 30 countries. If you are an ICT company looking to grow your business, drive down manufacturing or R&D costs, or promote exports, investing in Bangladesh will be of interest to you.
- Competitive wage costs – up to 40% below India
- Favorable geographical position, between India and China
- Low cost energy supplies, especially natural gas
- Low transport costs
- Existing cluster of over 400 IT companies
- Foreign investment already present in sector
- Government incentives for investors seeking to use Bangladesh as a platform for export.
- Intellectual Property Rights of knowledge assets of software and ICT companies are strongly protected under newly established ICT Act (Cyber Law)
- High graduate output and excellent IT and linguistic skills
- Joint Venture opportunities, allowing Bangladesh companies to acquire new technologies and management methods.
- Targeting international IT/software companies as part of an outsourcing strategy
- Annual market size is growing at a rate of over 25% and is forecast to rise to $45m by 2009
- The new ICT park opening in 2009 will offer facilities and business environment conducive to hi-tech industry.
- Government plans to strengthen and expand training programmes for IT industry, thereby increasing number of qualified workforce
- Upgrade programme for telecommunications infrastructure will enhance competitiveness.
(E) Investment in Pharmaceutical Sector
- Pharmaceutical Industry has grown in Bangladesh in the last two decades.
- There are nearly 200 manufacturers who together make about 95% of the formulations required for the country. Growing at an average rate of 9%, the formulation industry offers tremendous potential.
- Local firms manufacture about 6,000 brands of medicines in different dosage forms.
- There are 1,600 wholesale drug license holders and about 39,000 retail drug license holders in Bangladesh.
- Anti-infective is the largest therapeutic class of locally produced medicinal products, distantly followed by antacids and anti-ulcerants. Other significant therapeutic classes include non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID), vitamins, central nervous system (CNS) and respiratory products
- Domestic companies account for more than 65% of the pharmaceutical business in Bangladesh.
- However, among the top 20 companies of Bangladesh 6 are multinationals including GSK, Aventis, Novartis & Roche.
- Following the Drug (Control) Ordinance of 1982, some of the local pharmaceutical companies improved range and quality of their products considerably.
- Squire, Beximco, Acme , Incepta, Opsonin, ACI, General Pharma, Ibn Sina are quite strong and enjoy good market share.
- Export of pharmaceutical products is growing faster
- A number of private pharmaceutical companies have already entered the export market with their basic materials and finished products.
- They export their products to Vietnam, Singapore, Myanmar, Bhutan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Yemen, Oman, Thailand, Philippines, Afghanistan, Libya, Iraq and some countries of Central Asia and Africa.