Monday, June 16, 2008

Separate industrial development plan for north demanded

Welcoming the proposed budget, business community and economists in Rajshahi have urged the government to formulate a separate plan for industrial growth of the northern part of the country.

They also urged for setting up of a vocational training institute for overseas-job seekers, food storage and processing establishments, and special agricultural loan on minimum interests, something they demanded earlier during a pre-budget meeting with the finance adviser in Rajshahi.

The proposed budget does not have any specific plan for industrial growth of the region, they said Wednesday.

How to ensure a balanced inter regional distribution of resources was not made clear in the budget speech, said Professor of Economics at Rajshahi University Prof Dr Rafiqul Islam, who was also the former vice chancellor of Islamic University.

Manjur Faruk Chowdhury, president of National Association of Small and Cottage Industries in Bangladesh (NASCIB), said tax holiday for at least five years on agro-based industries is needed.

Without any clearly outlined and separate industrial policy, investors would not be interested to set up industries in the north", said Dr M Abdul Wadud, professor of Economics at Rajshahi University.

Zamat Khan, Rajshahi Rokkha Sangram Parishad convener, said Rajshahi remained neglected since independence. "People do not hope that this government too would neglect the region".

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