Planning Minister M A Mannan said there should be a bridge between the country’s development plan makers and the root-level beneficiaries to reap optimum benefits of development.

“We usually formulate the (development-related) documents by staying in the capital. But we have to know properly the requirements of people, especially those of the root-level, so that they could be directly benefited,” he also said.

M A Mannan was speaking as the chief guest at the 8th five-year plan (FYP) briefing function in the city on Tuesday.

The General Economics Division (GED) of the Planning Commission (PC) organised the programme at the PC with GED Member Professor Shamsul Alam in the chair.

On the occasion, Prof Alam presented main segments of the 8th FYP, whose implementation started from June 2020. The National Economic Council (NEC), headed by the Prime Minister, approved the development plan in December.

The planning minister said the development plan has been framed targeting (to fulfill) some ambitions of the country.

“Following the last development plans, we have already taken some mega projects. We are hopeful of getting more projects in the future too. Those will take the country to a new height.”

He urged the development plan executors (public servants) to offer their utmost sincerity for making Bangladesh a developed nation by 2041.

In his presentation, Prof Alam said the 8th FYP (FY 2021-FY 2025) has set a target to attain 8.51 per cent gross domestic product (GDP) growth in its terminal year, FY (fiscal year) 2025.

The development plan has targeted to cut down the poverty rate to 15.6 per cent at the end of its execution.

Meanwhile, the country’s GDP growth rate dropped to 5.24 per cent in FY 2020 as against 8.15 per cent in the previous FY.

For the first time in many years, the poverty rate increased to 29.4 per cent in the aftermath of the deadly virus outbreak – from 18.8 per cent, as estimated before the pandemic, a GED report noted recently.

According to the 8th FYP, the government has set a target to boost the country’s GDP growth to 8.2 per cent at the end of FY 2021 from 5.24 per cent in FY 2020.

Besides, it has set a target to expand the economic growth at the rate of 8.22 per cent in FY 2022, 8.29 per cent in FY 2023, 8.32 per cent in FY 2024, and 8.51 per cent in FY 2025.

The plan has also aimed at cutting down the poverty rate to 23 per cent in FY 2021, 20 per cent in FY 2022, 18.5 per cent in FY 2023, 17 per cent in FY 2024, and 15.6 per cent in FY 2025.

To achieve the growth target, the government would require an aggregate investment worth Tk 64.96 trillion during the 8th FYP implementation period.

Of the projected investment, a sum of Tk 57.48 trillion, or 88.5 per cent of the total, would come from the government’s internal resources, while Tk 747.59 billion or 11.5 per cent is expected to be available from external sources.

During the plan implementation period, some 11.3 million new jobs are expected to be created.

The development plan has also set a target of raising the investment to GDP ratio to 36.99 per cent at the end of the 8th FYP.

Besides, the plan has taken a target to raise the tax-GDP ratio to 12.30 per cent from the existing level of 8.90 per cent.

It has highlighted ensuring quality education, universal health services measures, and creating employment for the returnee migrant workers and temporary unemployed people due to Covid-19.

The plan has also focused on ensuring equality for both male and female for entering the labour market, reducing income inequality, an integrated social safety net programme, and facing climate change-induced risks.

The programme on Tuesday was also attended, among others, by Planning Secretary Mohammad Joynul Bari, Statistics and Informatics Division Secretary Mohammad Yamin Chowdhury, and the PC members.

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