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Tax-breaks, incentives lure investors

Tax-breaks, incentives lure investors

A rising number of entrepreneurs are joining the queue to establish private economic zones, tempted by the tax breaks and a host of other benefits offered by the government.

Some 43 entrepreneurs have so far applied to the Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority (Beza) for licences to set up economic enclaves on their land.

The Beza awarded the final licences to six and pre-qualification licences to 17.

The remaining 20 applicants are awaiting approval from the Beza governing board headed by the prime minister.

The Beza list of investors, who are setting up private economic zones, include big business groups such as Meghna, City, Aman, Bashundhara, Akij, Abdul Monem, Unique, Nitol-Niloy and Kazi Farms.

The incentive package, which includes tax and duty benefits, is the main reason behind the growing interest of entrepreneurs to set up private economic zones, said Paban Chowdhury, executive chairman of the Beza.

“Besides, the entrepreneurs consider that they will get support from us in getting utility connections,” he added.

The Beza started its journey at the end of 2010 with a view to facilitating industrialisation for job creation, increased exports and advancement of the economy, which has been growing at upwards of 7 percent annually.

The state agency came up with various incentives to lure in local and foreign investors to economic zones, which are being developed under four types of arrangements.

These are: by the government itself, under public-private partnership arrangement, by private sector players, and under government-to-government contracts.