The Business Initiative Leading Development (BUILD) presented the National Logistics Development Policy (NLDP) framework at the third meeting of the Logistics Infrastructure Development Working Committee at the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) yesterday.
Md Tofazzel Hossain Miah, senior secretary to the Prime Minister's Office and the co-chair of the committee, appreciated the role of the Ministry of Industries for including logistics as the thrust sector, which was approved in the cabinet recently.
The benefits of including logistics as a Thrust Sector will theoretically work out, and this would be a paradigm shift for the country in the future, reads a press release.
"We would like to draft the logistics policy as the next step, and once the policy is in place, we will go for implementation, boosting the growth," said Tofazzel.
Ferdaus Ara Begum, CEO of the BUILD, in her keynote presentation, said there was no alternative to the development of a synchronised multimodal logistics management system to reach $2.5 trillion economy size and $1.02 trillion in investment by 2041 as logistics had been treated as the key factor to take investment decisions.
Besides, implementing the National Logistics Development Policy could be a way to ensure sustainable growth of the logistics sub-sectors, she added.
Md Jashimuddin, president of the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI), said once the draft was shared with them, they would work to gather their comments on the policy and would be ready to provide all supports.
Emphasising more engagement from both public and private sectors, Abul Kasem Khan, co-chair of the committee, thanked everybody for working together on the policy, which was very much required as logistics was the number one issue for supporting business.
Mahbubul Alam, president of the Chattogram Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI), suggested establishing a truck terminal in each and every port so that transportation and communication were easier.
Rizwan Rahman, president of the Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI), said there would be a need to organise sub-sectorial FGDs, and responsibilities could be shared in that respect.
Bonded ware facilities are different for different sectors, which can be linked with the policy.
Naquib Khan, president of the Supply Chain Management, suggested including the lead time issue along with the cost calculation.
Nusrat Baby, transport specialist, the World Bank, emphasised bringing convergence in all sectorial logistics issues and expressed their desire to extend all support to research and development in having a good logistics sector.
Nihad Kabir, chairperson of the BUILD, said, "We need to be more ambitious in fixing the target of logistics cost reduction so we can challenge ourselves."She suggested bringing the National Board of Revenue (NBR) on board from the beginning and taking care of WTO-related issues as the country would graduate by 2026.
Dr Masrur Reaz, chairman, Policy Exchange, thanked the BUILD for developing a policy and suggested an integrated angle for each subsector.
Mohammad Lutfullah, senior private sector specialist of IFC, said formal inclusion of logistics sector by the Cabinet in the industrial policy was much appreciated recognition from the government.
Zakia Sultana, secretary to the Ministry of Industries, was present at the meeting.