Special Correspondent: Pushing back all obstacles, the dream bridge built on the banks of the Padma was opened on June 25. The bridge will contribute 1.23 percent to the country’s GDP growth. And the GDP of the south-west will increase by 2.3 percent.
With the launch of the Padma Bridge, 21 backward districts in the south-west will benefit. The districts are Khulna, Bagerhat, Jessore, Satkhira, Narail, Kushtia, Meherpur, Chuadanga, Jhenaidah and Magura of Khulna Division; Barisal, Pirojpur, Bhola, Patuakhali, Barguna and Jhalokati of Barisal division and Gopalganj, Faridpur, Madaripur, Shariatpur and Rajbari of Dhaka division. However, economists believe that it is important to invest in various sectors in the south, including clothing and tourism, to get more benefits from the Padma Bridge. Policy Research Institute (PRI) Executive Director Ahsan H. Mansoor told those economic activities in the south need to be increased so that foreign investment can come.
‘The more economic activity there is in the south of the country, the greater its contribution to GDP. With the launch of the Padma Bridge, it will be easier to import goods from the south. Goods will move from one place to another in no time.
Growth will increase from one to a maximum of two percent.
‘Investment in the south is needed to get the maximum benefit of the Padma Bridge. There can be investment in all fields. This will increase employment in the country. We need to invest more in Kuakata. People will leave Cox’s Bazar and go to Kuakata.
According to economists, the inauguration of the Padma Bridge will radically change the economic situation in 21 districts in the south and south-west of the country. This one bridge will change the destiny of the people of this region.
Direct communication will be established with Mongla and Payra ports.
Bangladesh will be connected to the Asian Highway through the Padma Bridge, which will give a new dimension to the economy. Industrial establishments and EPZs will be formed in this large area. Trade and commerce will expand in this backward region. It will have a positive impact on the economy of the whole country.
Although the 21 backward districts of the south and south-west have been neglected for a long time, there is a continuum of development in these districts after the present government took over. In detail, the bridge will play an important role in many areas, including communication, trade and tourism in South Asia and Southeast Asia.
Economists say the Padma Bridge will add an additional ?? 10 billion to GDP, almost three times the cost of the bridge.
Research Institute Center for Policy Dialogue (CPD) Special Fellow. Mustafizur Rahman said, Padma bridge is a matter of our pride. This is not just a bridge, the Padma Bridge will be the main driving force of the economy. This will add to the geographical division we had and through this Bangladesh will emerge as an integrated economy.
‘The savings that the Padma Bridge will have on our investment, distribution and marketing will have a positive impact on our economy. There will also be massive employment. In the meantime, various types of investment signboards can be seen along the Padma corridor. However, we believe that the employment that will be generated by these investments will contribute significantly to our economy. ‘
He said that what should be done with the Padma Bridge, such as: Special Economic Zones, Industrial Parks should also be done. We need to prepare skilled manpower for these. So, if you can do the things that are supposed to be done after the opening of the bridge, it is possible that the contribution to GDP will be much higher.
‘According to the government, growth will increase by 1.2 per cent. But it could be more. If we can increase economic zones and investment, GDP growth will be higher. However, it will not be automatic. According to the plan, it will be possible to develop the economic zone, investment, industrial parks and tourism sector.
The ministers and state ministers think that the dream has been awakened in the heart of the devastating Padma through this bridge. Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi said, Padma was a glorious Padma, now it will become a glorious Padma. With this we will build new success. New history will be made. Don’t write on stone, don’t write on heart, Sheikh Hasina’s name.
“As long as the Padma Bridge exists, we will carry this name in our hearts,” he added. Bangabandhu said, “I can’t keep it under control.” His successor, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, said in the same tone, “I can’t stop it.” The World Bank said a lot, you don’t give money. But we will cross. ‘That courage, the glorious declaration is today’s Padma Bridge.
Stakeholders have claimed that the economic impact of the Padma Bridge will have a positive response not only in Bangladesh but in the whole world.
State Minister for Planning. Shamsul Alam told that after the inauguration of Padma Bridge, Dhaka’s communication with the south-west will be easier. Besides, the transportation of goods and transportation will be greatly increased. That’s why the products we have, they will come easily. Again, products can be easily taken from Dhaka. This coming and going will create a lot of activities. The availability of products will increase. That will create demand in the market. The wider economic markets we have will be more integrated.
He said the impact of economic activities would be felt directly in the country’s economy. As a result, GDP growth will increase by 1.3 percent. In addition, the increase in employment will eliminate unemployment in this area. As a result, GDP growth will accelerate and the country’s economy will be stronger.
Claiming that the economic impact of the Padma Bridge would spread across the country, Planning Minister MA Mannan told that if one notices the travel, its contribution can be seen directly. With the opening of the Padma Bridge, the pressure on Paturia-Daulatdia will be reduced. And if the pressure decreases there, the pressure on the Jamuna bridge will decrease. So, the Padma Bridge is not only a blessing to the people of the South, but its influence will spread to the North, East, South and West of the country.
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