WB approves $1.05b for Bangladesh to create quality jobs, react to pandemic

11 Aug 2020 1:20 PM
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The World Bank yesterday approved $1.05 billion for three projects to help Bangladesh create quality jobs and accelerate monetary recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic together with build resilience to future crises.

"This is a fantastic response to an unprecedented crisis. The Covid-19 pandemic possesses deeply jeopardised many of Bangladesh's amazing achievements in poverty reduction and shared prosperity, including livelihoods of its populace," said Mercy Tembon, Universe Bank Region Director for Bangladesh and Bhutan.

"These projects will help the persons and the overall economy bounce again by creating more and better careers and promoting direct personal investment in specialised financial zones while boosting the foundations for an electronic economy."

The $500 million Private Investment and Digital Entrepreneurship (PRIDE) Project will promote and attract about $2 billion direct private investments and strengthen social and environmental standards in selected public and private economical zones and software technology parks. It will also create 150,000 careers, of which a share will be dedicated to women -- about 40 percent in program parks and 20 percent in monetary zones.

It will also develop the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Shilpa Nagar II found in Mirsarai-Feni, including road systems with stormwater drainage, solar-powered streetlights, climate-resilient normal water, sanitation, and power network. The project will also establish Dhaka's primary digital entrepreneurship hub in the Janata Program Technology Park and transform it into a green setting up. By attracting domestic and foreign non-public investment, incorporating in the IT and ITES sectors, the job will help the market to rebound from the impacts of Covid-19.

The $295 million Enhancing Digital Government and Economy (EDGE) Project will establish an integrated, cloud-computing digital platform for all government agencies and improve cyber-security, that will bring about savings of $200 million in the general public sector's IT investments. Even more, it'll build resiliency during future crises, whereby the platform will permit the government to use nearly and deliver critical public services to citizens and businesses.

The project will generate 100,000 jobs, with a particular give attention to women, train 100,000 youth in digital and disruptive technologies, and establish a digital leadership academy and centres of excellence. It will also help improve the revenues of IT businesses by $300 million and promote local IT companies in international markets.

To lessen vulnerabilities from the pandemic and plan the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the project will help digitalise small and medium enterprises and strategic sectors.

The $250 million Second Programmatic Jobs Development Policy Credit will generate fiscal space to support the government's response to the Covid-19 crisis, while helping restoration and setting up resiliency of the economy, of staff and of vulnerable populations to future shocks.

The financing can help Bangladesh to create large-scale jobs for citizens, including women, youth, and migrant workers. The job -- second in a programmatic group of three -- helps reforms to modernise the trade and expense regime, build a more powerful system of expanded protection nets and labor protections, and help vulnerable people access better jobs, especially during crises.

The World Bank is among the first development partners to aid Bangladesh after its independence.

Bangladesh currently has among the most significant IDA programmes totaling more than $13 billion. Since independence, the World Bank has committed more than $31 billion in grants, interest-free, and concessional credits to the country.