Govt wants to increase plastic sector’s contribution to GDP

Abu Sufian

The Plastic Industry Development Policy 2023 has been unveiled with an aim to increase the plastic sector’s contribution to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by at least 2 per cent and create 5,00,000 jobs by 2028.

The policy has also set a target to increase the plastics and packaging industry market to $10 billion by 2028 and $20 billion by 2030, ensuring at least 15 per cent of annual growth per year in this sector. The government recently issued a gazette on this policy:

“The aim of the policy is to obtain prosperity in this sector by encouraging foreign direct investment in plastic goods.” Earlier, the government approved the policy by the cabinet on September 4.

 

According to the Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA), the domestic market is currently around $2 billion. The country also exported plastic products worth $209.86 million in FY23, according to the Export Promotion Bureau (EPB).

“There are around 5,000 plastic enterprises in Bangladesh, employing about 1.2 million people and producing a variety of products for the domestic as well as the export market,” BIDA said.

Plastic is a crucial component of many products in other sectors of the economy, like textiles, healthcare, construction, electronics, energy generation, automotive, etc. Besides,

the country’s per capita plastic consumption grew from 5.56 to 17.24 kg between 2005 and 2017, but it is still below the global average of 80 kg per person.

The policy also emphasized the need to enhance the manufacturing capacity of domestically produced alternatives and boost the export of products with higher value to broaden the market for local goods nationally and internationally. Under the policy,

the government will grant a 10-year income tax exemption for both plastic parks and backward linkage industries and allow duty-free imports of capital equipment, spare parts, and accessories.

Additionally, ports will offer special concessions on export duties, taxes, and fees for handling, unloading, or storing goods and importing capital equipment.

Tax credits on raw materials and supplies will be provided, and essential tax concessions will be extended for basic infrastructure development projects.

Furthermore, there will be a reduction in VAT for the purchase of local goods and services, including land-based telecommunications, electricity, and utilities. Bonded warehouse facilities will also be made accessible, the policy said.


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