2018-07-10 11:42:39 BdST

Govt reduce investment ceiling to attract small projects


The government has decided to reduce the minimum investment ceiling for projects to be implemented under the public private partnership (PPP) on a government to government (G to G) basis, officials said.

Under the existing policy, the lowest investment under such arrangement has to be US$ 250 million.

The board of governors of the PPP Authority at a recent meeting decided to lower the ceiling to $ 150 million to raise the number of such projects.

In this connection, the PPP Authority has been asked to take necessary steps to amend the relevant clause of the PPP policy.

Director of the PPP Authority Abul Bashar said the PPP projects under G to G arrangement is a new concept.

"At first we thought that we would implement only the big projects under this concept. But if we keep the minimum ceiling at such a high amount, the investment may be confined to a fixed point," he said.

For example, he said if a project cost stands at $ 180 million, under the existing minimum investment ceiling, that cannot be implemented under the G to G arrangement.

"So, the board of governors has decided to lower the ceiling aiming to attract increased numbers of projects," Mr Bashar said.

According to another PPP official, Bangladesh has so far signed memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Japan and Singapore for implementing PPP projects under G to G basis.

Later, a list of projects was forwarded to Japan for implementing those under G to G basis in the light of PPP concept.

From the list, Japan is now reviewing eight projects which are: the construction of new inland container depot (ICD) near Dhirasram, multimodal hub at Kamalapur, multimodal hub at Dhaka airport station of Bangladesh railway, and the outer ring road.

Japan is also reviewing the project proposals like MRT Line-2, the improvement of Chittagong-Cox's Bazar Highway, the construction of the second Padma bridge, and the operation and maintenance of Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport.

The board of governors asked the PPP Authority not to remove any project from the list before Tokyo completes the review.

Meanwhile, after signing the MoU, Singapore has also outlined possible investment areas including port, tourism, infrastructure, and ICT.

Now the PPP Authority has requested the ministries and departments concerned to forward projects in those arena, which can be implemented under Singapore's funding on G to G basis.

Another senior PPP official said the authority has been receiving good response over implementing projects under PPP on a G to G concept.

Countries such as the United Kingdom, Turkey, South Korea, Egypt, and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia have responded with positively to the concept.

The authority is in preliminary talks with those countries to promote the idea, he said.

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