Industrialization in Bangladesh
Industrialization is an essential pre-requisite for rapid and sustained economic development and social progress. Bangladesh as an underdeveloped country is industrially backward. There are many reasons behind the backwardness. Among them, lack of positive and favorable industrial policy, small savings, want of capital, lack of infrastructural facilities, lack of technological know-how, unskilled manpower, political instability, and lack of proper govt policy are the main causes of backwardness in the way of industrialization. Despite all these hurdles, small scale and medium scale industries have flourished. But the speed of flourishment is very slow. Characteristics of industrialization include the use of technological innovation to solve problems as opposed to superstition or dependency upon conditions outside human control such as the weather, as well as a more efficient division of labor and economic growth. Bangladesh is mainly an agricultural country. The majority of the people depend on agriculture and live in the village. So, setting up large scale industries is very difficult here.
In a developing country like Bangladesh, industrialization is an essential pre-requisite for sustainable economic development and achievement of social progress. In spite of setting up a Board of Investment’ and Privatization Board, foreign investors are not so much interested in ‘investing money. Even our local investors show little interest in this connection. The main reasons for their unwillingness are political instability, social insecurity, and lack of proper communication systems. The investors desire for congenial atmosphere for investment where he can be sure of a good return on his investment. But political unrest puts hindrances and causes uncertainty for a good return. Moreover, the generation and supply of electricity are very inadequate. But it is a vital element for increasing industrial production. The growth of the economy and the development of a nation depend on the development of the industrial sector.
Objectives of industrialization are –
- To provide employment to the working labor force,
- To increase GDP
- To supply consumer, capital and intermediary goods,
- To support the agriculture and service sectors,
- To improve the balance of payment positively by promoting export industry and import substitute industries.
The industrial sector in Bangladesh is a huge contributor to the country’s economic growth. The country faces severe competition in the world market to maintain and develop its trade and balance of payment in its favor. In the present world, there is a keen competition among the countries to provide various facilities and support by creating a congenial atmosphere for investment. If we can not keep pace with other countries in the question of providing favorable facilities and support by creating a congenial atmosphere, our country will not be industrialized up to our expectations. Many countries like Malaysia, Thailand, Taiwan, Korea have already achieved tremendous success in industrialization faster than ours. We are repeatedly lagging behind in industrialization.
Industrialization and specialization in manufacturing is the obvious way in which Bangladesh can raise its per capita income and social structure. But we have, to some extent, become successful in small, medium, and agro-based industries. Within twenty years, garments and textile industries have flourished substantially. Millions of people have got opportunities for employment in the garments and textile sector. We are earning the majority of our foreign exchange through this sector. Besides, ceramic, cement, and fertilizer industries have also developed rapidly. But all these industries have flourished with the initiative of private entrepreneurs. On the other hand, public-owned industries have been closed down one by one to meet up continuous losses. Especially large scale industries like paper mills, jute mills, cotton mills, and sugar mills have to face such a consequence. Many workers and employees have lost their jobs.
So with the experience of the past, we have to take initiatives to set up small and medium Industries. We should also encourage agro-based industries for rapid industrialization. The problems of ensuring primary energy services are of prime importance to industrial consumers. The Government of Bangladesh has taken steps to facilitate the industrialization in Bangladesh. Besides, we should ensure political stability, social security development ‘of communication facilities, formulation of favorable and positive industrial policy to accelerate industrialization in Bangladesh, and to attract foreign investors as well.