3-day regional confec on graduation ends
The least developed countries need to reduce aid dependency and emphasis on local resource mobilisation for graduation to the middle income countries, said officials after a three-day regional conference on financing graduation gap of LDCs in Dhaka on Thursday.
The Economic Relations Division in association with the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, and the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs organised the conference.
‘We should not depend only on assistance of the developed countries. In the present situation of the LDCs we need to focus on local resource mobilisation and building inner strength for graduation,’ ERD secretary Mohammad Mejbahuddin told reporters at a press briefing after the conference at the Sonargaon Hotel.
He said that the overall trend of the foreign assistance was also not positive.
‘So, we need to focus on private-public partnership to get the core investment. We also need to focus on workers migration because remittance has the minimum system loss as it directly reaches to the beneficiaries,’ he said.
Replying to a question, he said that there was no real threat if Bangladesh graduates from LDC, ‘By the time we graduate we will have the capacity to compete. There will be some adjustments in the transition period but that will not be major,’ he said.
He also said that after the graduation the foreign assistance would continue for some period but Bangladesh would lose some facilities.
Mejbahuddin said that transparency and better regulatory regime would improve the business environment which would help accumulate local asset and foreign loans and grants.
‘These are the recommendation for the LDCs which the conference participants have agreed upon,’ he said.
Replying to another question, he said that Bangladesh needed around $10-12 billion annual investment for graduation by 2020.
He said that the conference also outlined two sets of recommendation for the development partners and United Nations bodies.
The development partners should ensure the allocation of official development assistance at the rate of 0.15-0.2 per cent of the gross national income of the respective countries, the LDC participants recommended.
They also recommended that the development partners should ensure that after graduation from the LDCs there will be no instant change of the aid structure.
The graduation from the LDC to middle income country is calculated on three index — GNI Index, Human Development Index and Economic Vulnerability Index.
Fifty-five policymakers from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, Kiribati, Laos, Myanmar, Nepal, Solomon Islands, East Timor, Tuvalu and Vanuatu participated in the conference.
-With New Age input