ICCB 22nd Annual Council

Challenges in achieving higher growth

Bangladesh faces formidable challenges in moving to a higher growth path of 8 percent plus GDP to become a middle income country. The foremost challenge lies with the stagnant private investment followed by weak institutional capacity to implement development projects. To achieve its goal of middle-income country status by 2021 and to accelerate inclusive growth as well as reduce poverty and income inequality, the country will require a substantial increase in yearly investments from 29.0% of GDP in FY2015 to 34.4% of GDP by FY2020, said ICC Bangladesh President Mahbubur Rahman while presenting the Executive Board Report at the ICC Bangladesh Annual Council held in Dhaka on Thursday (25 May).

Bangladesh economy embraces 2017 with some other challenges that include declining remittance and rising nonperforming loans from the domestic side. Volatile global and gulf


region politics, and troubled European economy pose threats as external sources. Following the European Debt Crisis and depreciation of different currencies against the US dollar, the pace of recovery of the European Union economies — the primary destination of Bangladeshi exports — will be critical in 2017, the Council Report added.

According to a World Bank report Bangladesh is both an inspiration and a challenge for policymakers and practitioners of development. While the poverty reduction efforts to date have been extraordinary, Bangladesh faces daunting challenges with about 28 million people still living below the poverty line. The country is at an important juncture, when with the right policies and timely action; it can move up within the middle-income bracket, mentioned Mahbubur Rahman.

However, Bangladesh economy is moving on a stable path, despite external and internal challenges. With positive near-term macroeconomic outlook, declining inflation, rising reserve, contained fiscal deficit and stable public debt indicates brighter prospects. The country is among the top 12 developing countries, who achieved 6 plus percent growth in 2016 and one of the top performers in Asia over the past decade. According to experts by any standards, Bangladesh economy is doing well and Bangladesh’s economic and social achievements are widely acclaimed around the world, said Mahbubur Rahman.

The Council adopted the Executive Board Report & Audited Financial Statements of ICC Bangladesh for the year 2016.

ICC Bangladesh President Mahbubur Rahman presented Congratulating Memento to Envoy Group Chairman Mr. Kutubuddin Ahmed and Meghna Group Chairman Mr. Mostafa Kamal for receiving DHL-The Daily Star Business Award as Business Person of the year 2016 & Enterprise of the year 2016 respectively.

Among others, ICCB Vice Presidents Latifur Rahman & Rokia A. Rahman; ICCB Board Members Aftab ul Islam; Anwar-Ul-Alam Chowdhury (Parvez); Md. Fazlul Hoque; Kutubuddin Ahmed; Mir Nasir Hossain; R. Maksud Khan; Golam Mainuddin, MCCI Vice President; ICCB Members, Sajedul Islam, Acting CCO, Citibank N.A.; Francois de Maricourt Chief Executive Officer, HSBC Bangladesh; Md. Hashem Chowdhury, Additional Managing Director & COO, Mutual Trust Bank Limited; Choudhury Moshtaq Ahmed, Additional Managing Director, National Bank Limited; Md. Akhter Hossain, Deputy Managing Director, Shahjalal Islami Bank Ltd.; Md. Majibur Rahman, Representative, Sonali Bank; Md. Khalilur Rahman, Managing Director, National Housing Finance and Investments; Syed Moinuddin Ahmed, Additional Managing Director, Green Delta Insurance Co. Ltd.; Khawza Manzer Nadeem, Managing Director, United Insurance Company; Rubaiyat Jamil, Managing Director, ICE Technologies; Basirun Nabi Khan, Representative, H&M; Rizwan-Ur Rahman, Managing Director & CEO, ETBL Securities & Exchange Ltd.; Mohammad Shahjahan Khan, Managing Director , S. S.Shipping & Chartering Ltd.; Sandeep Gujral, Senior Vice President , Li & Fung Bangladesh Limited; Syed Waseque Md. Ali, Managing Director , First Security Islami Bank Limited; Md. Abdul Jabbar, Managing Director, DBL Group; Muhammad A. (Rumee) Ali, CEO, Bangladesh International Arbitration Centre (BIAC); Parveen Mahmud, FCA, Chairman, Shasha Denims Ltd.; Mostafa Kamal, Founder & Chairman, Meghna Group of Industries.