Foreign Private Investment Promotion and Protection Act
Bangladesh enacted its prime foreign direct investment law, the Foreign Private Investment Promotion and Protection Act, in 1980. It was crafted to promote and protect foreign private investments in the country. The law says the government will be responsible for fair and equitable treatment of foreign private investment. The core reason for enacting the law was to create jobs.
Bangladesh Investment Development Authority
Bangladesh Investment Development Authority is the apex investment promotion agency in Bangladesh. It was formed in 2016 under the Bangladesh Investment Development Authority Act. It represented a merger between two former agencies, the Board of Investment and the Privatisation Commission.
Bangladesh Investment Development Authority launched its online One-Stop Service (OSS) portal in 2019. The OSS is the country’s first-ever interoperable service platform. It is intended to make investors’ lives easier, so that all regulatory applications can be made via a single platform.
Small and Medium Enterprise Policy
Bangladesh formulated its SME Policy in 2019. This includes strategies to promote small businesses by strengthening institutional support to SMEs. These strategies include a regulatory reform agenda and removing red tape. It also contains a guideline for investing in human capital and technology transfer.
Secured Transactions Act (draft)
Bangladesh formulated its Secured Transaction (Movable Property) Act in 2018. This is still in the draft phase, and has not been enacted into law. It recognises movable property as collateral against loans from the banking system. Furniture, gold, vehicles, computers, patents, goodwill and copyrights, as well as many other tangible and intangible assets, will be considered as collateral. According to the draft act, a dedicated regulatory body, the Secured Transaction Registration Authority, will be formed to oversee the secured transactions.
United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework
The United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework is a joint implementation plan by the Government of Bangladesh and the United Nations launched in 2021. Under the framework, the UN will help Bangladesh to tackle its key challenges to reach its pledged goals, such as its attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and high-income status. The framework is aligned with Bangladesh’s mid- and long-term plans. It has five strategic priorities: inclusive economy, equitable human development, resilient environment, participatory governance and gender equality.
Water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH)
Safe Water Supply and Sanitation Policy and Water Policy
Bangladesh formulated its Safe Water Supply and Sanitation Policy in 1998. Its Water Policy was formulated in 1999. Both the policies focus on industrial use, agricultural use, groundwater regulation and sanitation service enhancement. The country’s water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) sector is mainly guided by these two policies.
Water Supply and Sanitation Strategy
Bangladesh formulated its Water Supply and Sanitation Strategy in 2021. This represents an implementation framework for the water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) sector to attain the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. The ultimate goal is to ensure sustainable WASH services for all with safety nets. The strategy includes a guideline to all stakeholders—the government, local government institutions, the private sector and civil society. It has three objectives: increase the coverage of WASH services, address the emerging challenges in the sector and strengthen sector-specific governance.
Water and Sanitation Sector Strategy
Bangladesh formulated its Water and Sanitation Sector Strategy in 2020. This is designed to deliver a 100% subsidy the water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) services for the poorest and most marginalised segments of the population. It has a list of criteria for service recipients.
Sector Development Plan for Water Supply and Sanitation
Bangladesh formulated its Sector Development Plan for Water Supply and Sanitation in 2011. This is a long-term (15-year) plan. It represents a framework for planning, implementing and monitoring all activities in the water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) sector. It also includes an investment plan. It is to be revised and extended till 2030.
Qawmi madrasas are non-governmental faith-based Islamic educational institutions. In Bangladesh, they operate mostly through private donations. Every Qawmi madrasa has a managing committee comprising its principal, teachers and community representatives.
Qawmi madrasa education boards
In Bangladesh, Qawmi madrasas operate under six boards. The Qawmi Madrasa Education Board, or Befaqul Madarisil Arabia Bangladesh (BEFAQ), is the largest and oldest, founded in 1978. Most of the Qawmi madrasa boards are not regulated by the government.
Recognition of the Dawra degree on Qawmi madrasa education as equivalent to a graduate degree
In 2017, Bangladesh’s government recognised a higher diploma within the Qawmi system, known as the Dawra degree, as equivalent to a mainstream graduate Master’s degree. This recognition means the Dawra degree will be equivalent to the Islamic Studies Master’s degree.
Persons with disability
Bangladesh formulated its Disability Policy in 1995. It was designed to protect the rights of persons with disabilities. The Disability Welfare Act was enacted in 2001 to strengthen the policy’s mandate. A disability-focused coordination committee was formed to enhance the policy framework. The coordination committee delivered a five-year action plan on disability in 2006. In 2013, Bangladesh enforced a renewed law, the Disabled People’s Rights and Protection Act, to move the country towards an inclusive equal opportunity regime.
Action Plan on Disability
Bangladesh drafted its latest disability-oriented implementation document, the Action Plan on Disability, in 2018. This focuses on early detection, education, employment, social security and awareness-building.
Foundation for the Development of Disabled Persons
Bangladesh established its dedicated public institution for disability issues, the National Foundation for the Development of Disabled Persons, in 1999. This designs disability-friendly projects for different non-governmental and social organisations.
Photo ©️ Mahmud Hossain Opu