Bangladesh moves 8 notches up in the latest Global Competitive Index (GCI); credits to the time-befitting policies taken by the Awami League government. The latest GCI published by the World Economic Forum shows that the country has climbed up to 110th place among 148 nations in the 2013-14 Global Competitiveness Index. Bangladesh was 118th last year among 144 countries.
The GCI is the most respected assessment of national economic competitiveness, providing a mirror image of a country’s economic environment.
The Index is based on measures of 12 basic pillars: institutions, infrastructure, the macroeconomic environment, health, education, market efficiency, the labour market, financial market development, technological readiness, market size, innovation and business sophistication.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said, Bangladesh experiences unprecedented development activities only when Awami League comes to power. While talking to the newly elected committee of Barisal Bar Council at the Gono Bhaban today, the premier also said, the people of the country lives in peace only under the AL government.
Referring to past two terms of BNP, Sheikh Hasina who is also the President of AL said, BNP has a legacy of indulging in criminal like killing and extortion, and extremists activities.
Highlighting different development activities carried out by the current government, Hasina said, if voted to power again, AL will restore the long lost fame of Barisal as the granary of the country.
The lawyer leaders lauded the PM for her government’s successes. Later, a delegation of Barisal University Syndicate members led by Vice Chancellor Harun-ar-Rashid Khan met the premier.
In line with the Awami League government’s pledge to bring about a digital revolution in Bangladesh, four more telecom operators get licenses for launching 3G (Third Generation) services. In an auction held at a city hotel on Sunday, Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) distributed four licenses with bandwidth ranging between 10mhz and 5mhz to Grameen Phone, Airtel, Robi and Banglalink.
The four operators will have to launch the 3G services in all seven divisional cities by within 9 months. Or else, each of the operators will be fined $500 million, said BTRC Chairman Sunil Kanti Bose at the programme. Earlier, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the 3G services in the country provided by state-owned operator Teletalk. With the inclusion of four new operators in the scene, there will be competitions in the market and as a result, over 10 crores cell phone users of the country will be able to avail not only better 3G services but at cheaper rates as well.
With the country entering the new era of 3G services, people now can enjoy-
- video calls, teleconference
- uninterrupted video streaming
- watching television on mobile phones
- download at a lot faster speed
- new IT related business opportunities
Now that the 3G services is a reality, the Awami League government is working on introducing 4G services for a populace that has always been keen to taste the new advancements of technology.
The current government has achieved significant success in bringing down the labour migration cost. Previously one had to spend at least 200,000 Taka to go abroad for work. Even then, uncertainty loomed over their future as they had to go through private manpower exporters. The Awami League government has introduced Government to Government (G to G) system through which labourers are sent as per inter-government agreements and under government supervision. As a result, the migration cost has slumped to a meagre 32,000 to 60,000 Taka.
Under the Gto G project, Bangladesh government has sent 198 workers to Malaysia in April and 172 people in August. The migrated workers had to pay only 32,000 taka each. Malaysia wants to import another 50,000 labourers from Bangladesh.
In line with the Malaysia success, the current government is in talks with the countries of Middle East for signing G to G deals so that manpower can be exported from here at a low cost. Because of this cost-effective labour migration policy, every year the number of migrant workers from Bangladesh is increasing and the remittance inflow is on a continuous rise.
Seeking vote to return to power once again, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said, only Awami League ensures the protection of people’s rights. People had never been disappointed by entrusting their faith on the Awami League, she added.
“You voted for us in the 2008 election, and you were not deprived. If you vote us to power again, we will build a nation free from corruption, militancy and terrorism," she said while addressing a mass rally at Suharawardi Uddyan in the capital organized by Dhaka City unit of Awami League to mark the 38th anniversary of August 15, the day the Father of the Nation was killed.
“Those who burn the holy Quran, set fire to mosques, kill people and try to protect the war criminals, never want the welfare of the country. Awami League has established rule of law in the country,” she continued.
"Awami League is striding to build the country in the spirits of the War of Liberation. We want to rid the nation of poverty and hunger so that our children can grow up in a far better way,” she said at the Friday rally. Sheikh Hasina said, Dhaka city is taking up a modern and beautiful look as the current government had already implemented a number of communications and beautification projects. Highlighting the government's various moves to ease Dhaka traffic, she said, Mayor Hanif Flyover would soon be opened to traffic soon and the Metro Rail project would soon roll out.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today again dismissed opposition's demands for electoral reforms, saying she would not "budge an inch" on the constitutional provisions to reinstate the caretaker government system.
"I believe in Constitution and the election will be held in line with the Constitution... I won't budge an inch," she said while speaking at a press conference at her official residence Gono Bahaban this afternoon.
"What is the reason of inviting trouble to people's lives demonstrating for reinstating the provision?... We want to bring you towards the light, but what you want to see is darkness," Hasina said.
Pointing out the tyrannical rule of the past caretaker government, the Prime Minister said the people did not forget the bitter experience of the 1/11 government. "They clung to power for two years instead of three months and there was not a single person found from any profession who did not fall victim to their torture," she said.
On the question of neutrality of the polls, the premier said, “We have no desire to steal votes. We have done so much work, it is up to the people to vote for us; if they don’t, we won’t stay on.”
Bangladeshi scientists have decoded the genome sequence of local variety of jute. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina made the announcement of this feat at a press conference at the Gono Bahaban this afternoon.
"Complete information about the genome sequence of jute is in our hand," the Prime Minister announced. Prof. Maqsudul Alam, the leader of the scientist team that worked on the project, accompanied her at the conference.
"Earlier, our scientists successfully decoded the genome sequence of 'Tossa' (high-yielding variety) jute and devastating crop-killer fungal. Today, I proudly announce that our scientists also revealed the genome sequence of local variety of jute," she said. Terming the revelation as a great success of the local scientists, the Prime Minister said, "Our constant success in the research of genome sequence has placed Bangladesh in a dignified position on a world stage."
Sheikh Hasina extended her heartfelt thanks to Professor Maqsud and his team for their unrelenting stride in successful revelation of the genome sequence. The premier said, her government had taken steps to establish the intellectual property right (IPR) on jute and all scientific researches on jute including its genome sequence.
The genome sequence helps to identify of the genes responsible for an organism's characteristics, allowing scientists to modify the genes to either reduce or enhance features, according to desirability. Agriculture Minister Matia Chowdhury, Foreign Minister Dr Dipu Moni and Prof Maqsudul Alam also spoke on the occasion.
During the tenure of the current government, the import expenditure has significantly decreased. The fall in import expenditure comes mainly due to the record bumper harvest over the past few years. Bangladesh did not have to importing food which helped cut down the import expenses.
In the 2012-13 fiscal year, as export income climbed 11.22 percent, the import expenditure dropped by nearly 4.5 percent, a feat rare in the history of the country. Latest data from Bangladesh Bank indicates that Bangladesh imported goods worth $33.97 billion in 2012-13 fiscal year against $35.52 in the previous year, according to special report by bdnews24.com.
However, there here has been an increase in the number of imported capital machineries. This is supposed to have a positive impact on the country’s economy.
Current analysis shows that the country now spent less money in importing all goods except capital machineries and wheat in the last fiscal than the previous fiscals. The opening of letters of credit (LC) for importing capital machineries for industries has also increased by 30.39 percent in the 2012-13 FY. These have helped Bangladesh to achieve an account balance surplus in foreign transaction during the year. There was a $2.52 billion surplus at the end of 2012-13 FY whereas there was a deficit of $44.7 million in the previous year. This surplus reserve is enough to pay the country’s import bill for 5 months.