China has given permission to begin work on a 300ha business park in Bangladesh. It has taken over five years for china to initiate the project. Furthermore, the Chinese Economic and Industrial Zone (CEIZ), will be executed near the southeastern port of Chittogram.
Similarly, Sheikh Hasina, the prime minister of Bangladesh first proposed Establishing CEIZ. This happened to be during her visit to Beijing in 2014. The proposal approved by the Executive Committee of the National economic council in China. CEIZ development company which was set up under the China Harbor Engineering Company and Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority.
Authorities Pledge support for Bangladesh
Also, under the scheme, $100 million investment was promised by the Chinese authority and $50million were allocated by the Bangladeshi government. However, the scheme stalled out until recently that China Harbor has contacted Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority (Beza) to restore the deal.
The Beijing based company assures of making $100 million readily available and to begin marketing schemes to Chinese enterprises.
Daily Star, the Bangladeshi newspaper, reports of the rising interest of Chinese concerns in investing. 60 of the concerns are willing to invest $280m, which makes for about 40% of the available land.
Approval and Execution
Additionally, the company further adds that China’s ministry of commerce approves of taking the plan forward. Also, the National Development and Reform Commission and its parent, China communications construction company have rolled out the necessary approvals to proceed. As per the project representative, China harbor is now ready to begin work on infrastructure development.
“We will focus on four sectors for investment in the zone – logistics, manufacturing, chemical, and readymade garments,” he says.
How will the project payback?
Furthermore, Jiang mentioned that “CEIZ will be able to eventually attract more than $1bn in foreign investment, create 60,000 to 90,000 jobs, directly or indirectly, and ultimately boost industrialization and develop the economy of the surrounding Chattogram district.”
Paban Chowdhury, executive chairman of Beza said Chinese were eager over setting up factories on priority. This is to take economic benefit out of low tariffs on local goods, he says.
At present, a total of 88 economic zones exist in Bangladesh. Out of which, 59 are made by the government and 29 by foreign investors.
Strategic partnership and global dynamics
Moreover, the globalized world has its own techniques of strategically combatting its rival parties. China increasing involvement in the region will bring its host to choose between two sides.
How will the partnership impact the US- Bangladesh relationship is yet to be determined? As for the statistics, US trade with Bangladesh topped $3.06 in May 2020. Also, Bangladesh happens to be the biggest trading partner of India in South Asia. India exports to Bangladesh was around $9.2 billion in FY2018-2019.