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Bangladesh - 2 weeks ago

Chinese dev projects increasing in BD

Mahfuz Emran: Great Bangalee leader Maulana Bhasanisaid, go to China for seeinghow much progress they have made in just a few days. The news of China does not come to our country much and is not allowed to come. However, I wish I could have seen how they have built the country.
This is how Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman expressed his interest in visiting China. Bangabandhu described the development of the country in the book ‘Amar Dekha Naya China’ written on the memories of his visit to China in 1952.
World Bank, Asian Development Bank and other development partners continue to finance Bangladesh’s development projects. At the same time, other countries are also participating in various development projects. One of them is China. The important visible mega project of Bangladesh is the Padma Bridge.
Although this Padma bridge was built with the government’s own funding, the rail link of the Padma bridge was funded by China. Besides, there is no way to deny China’s contribution in implementing important projects like Karnaphuli Tunnel, Dasherkandi Sewage Treatment Plant. In addition to this, several other large projects funded by China are underway.
According to sources from the Department of Economic Relations, China’s loan flow to the country’s development projects has been increasing over the past decade. Since independence till 2012, it has given only $270 million in loans. In the last 12 years, it has given loans of $6.6 billion.
At this time, the amount of pledged loans is $10.6 billion. China now ranks fifth among development partners in terms of lending. So far, Bangladesh has taken the largest loan from the World Bank, which is 31 percent of the total loan. Next is the Asian Development Bank.
Which amounts to 23 percent of the total loan. Next is Japan. The amount of which is 17 percent of the total loan. And 10 percent of the total debt from Russia and 9 percent of the total debt from China.

It is known that in the last few years, the issue of China’s promised loan and loan waiver is gaining importance. At the same time, both have grown equally. It can be said that in 2013, China’s commitment to provide loans was $35.98 billion. However, with a discount of $7.7 million. In 2014, the pledge was $50 million. And discount $47.27 million. In 2016, the commitment was $19.57 billion. Discounted $11.57 million. Loan commitments in 2017 were $124.47 billion. Discounted $6.38 million. In this way, the commitment to give loans in 2022 was $112.69 billion. In 2023, the pledge was $113.27 billion and the discount was $27.62 billion.
It is known that 95 percent of the amount of credit that came from China to Bangladesh after independence came in the last 12 years. 85 percent came in the last six years. The country’s debt waiver has doubled in 2022-23 compared to 2019-20. In other words, after China’s Belt and Road Initiative or BRI was launched in 2013, China started giving large-scale loans.
During the visit of Chinese President Xi Jinping to Bangladesh in October 2016, 27 projects were finalized. About $20 billion of investment has been promised in these projects. $10 billion in loan agreement. A $3 billion loan deal is pending agreement.
It is known that the Chinese government mainly gives two types of loans. One of these is the US dollar Preferential Buyers Credit (PBC). And the other is the Government Concessional Loan (GCL) in China’s own currency. Which is called subsidized loan given by the government. But now everyone knows that China gives high interest loans. The flat rate of interest is 3 percent. And Bangladesh has to calculate 4.5 to 5 percent interest along with other charges.
A glimpse of what projects China may invest in in the future has been given by the Department of Economic Relations. Priority projects include – purchase of four seagoing vessels for Bangladesh Shipping Corporation, overall management and restoration of Teesta River, establishment of economic zone at Anwara in Chittagong, conversion of railway line from Akhaura to Sylhet section from meter gauge to dual gauge, digital connectivity and water supply projects for municipalities. For these 11 projects, $502 million have been requested from China.

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