14 mega projects dominate budget


To implement Vision 2021, the government has proposed allocation on priority basis to accelerate the ongoing mega projects, in the budget for 2019-20. In the budget speech, the fourteen mega projects, which are now being implemented, have been proposed to get Tk 45,140 crore.
The government has proposed the highest allocation of Tk 14,980 crore for the country’s first nuclear power plant, the Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant in Pabna, while the second highest allocation is set to go for Metro Rail project at Tk 7,212 crore.

The mega Padma Bridge project has been allocated Tk 5,370 crore, and Padma Rail Link project, Tk 3,995 crore. In the proposed budget, the Chattogram-Cox's Bazar rail line project gets Tk 1,105 crore, and Matarbari power plant at Moheshkhali, Tk3,056 crore. The government proposed to allocate Tk 1,407 crore for the power grid network, and Tk 2,108 crore for the expansion of power system network.

In the outgoing budget, the government had allocated Tk 40,000 crore to implement 10 mega projects to strengthen the country’s communication network, and to develop the power and energy sector to boost the economy. The government is aiming to achieve the double digit growth as quickly as possible through timely implementation of all nationally important infrastructure projects including mega projects like the Padma Bridge, Padma rail link project, Dohajari-Cox's Bazar rail line, Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant, Rampal Power Plant, Payra Sea Port, Matarbari Power Plant at Moheshkhali, and Dhaka Metro Rail.

Some mega projects are being implemented at Payra, Moheshkhali, and Matarbari, classifying these areas as power hub. The government is implementing a number of mega projects to establish an integrated and uninterrupted communication network in the country. The Padma Bridge, the tunnel under the Karnaphuli river, the Dhaka Elevated Expressway from Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport to Kutubkhali of Dhaka- Chattogram highway, and many other projects are among those, the budget speech said.

Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal presented the proposed budget in the parliament on Thursday. But he could not finish the presentation due to ill health. Later, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina took over the budget presentation on behalf of the finance minister. On the other hand, the proposed ADP is 21.39 percent higher than the current year’s as the government looks to mobilise a higher amount of foreign aid piled up in the pipeline.

In the next fiscal year, foreign aid utilisation will get a big boost: it has been fixed at Tk 71,800 crore, which is 40.78 percent higher than the current year’s. “Foreign aid has piled up, so we have decided to utilise more of it next year,” a senior official of the planning ministry said. The government also allocated Tk 52,805 crore, which is 26.05 percent of the new ADP to the transport sector.

The second highest allocation went to the power sector: Tk 26,017 crore. This is 12.83 percent of the proposed ADP. Among the other sectors, physical planning, water supply and housing got Tk 24,324 crore; education and religion Tk 21,379 crore; science, information and communication technology Tk 17,541 crore; rural development Tk 15,157 crore; health Tk 13,055 crore; agriculture Tk 7,616 crore; water resources Tk 5,652 crore; and public administration Tk 5,023 crore.