Finance minister AHM Mustafa Kamal on Thursday said that no country in the world other than Bangladesh compromised so much revenue by providing tax reliefs to the industrialists.
He identified tax relief for the country’s low tax-GDP ratio as he was addressing the two-day-long Bangladesh Development Forum 2020 that concluded at the Bangabandhu International Conference Centre in Dhaka on the day.
Tax holiday and incentives to trades were the major tax reliefs, he said, adding that an assessment would be done in future to ascertain the actual amount of revenue loss.
The BDF concluding session was also addressed by foreign minister AK Abdul Momen and prime minister’s economic affairs adviser Mashiur Rahman.
Momen too underscored the need for revenue mobilisation to meet the challenges in the areas of infrastructure and human resources development.
He also underscored the need for effective cooperation and assistance from the donors saying that they wanted donors not be mere ‘prescription partners’.
He said that the country was yet to receive any single penny out of $100 million promised to be provided by the donors to tackle the climate changes impacts in the country.
This was the fourth version of the BDF that focused on taking stocks of donors’ assessment of selected areas linked to the county’s 8th Five-Year Plan, sustainable development agenda 2030 and Vision 2041.
According to the BDF 2020 Communique, the forum also provided a stage for assessing the progress made in implementing the 7th Five-Year Plan and for evaluating SDGs.
The forum committed developing a BDF 2020 outcome document based on mutual accountability that set shared objective and targets; agreed actions of the outcome document will be followed by through the local consultative group in light of 8th Five-Year plan.
The government officials and the donors took part in eight working sessions.
The themes of the sessions were: private sector engagement and trade facilitation; partnership for climate change and its financing; innovative financing for a self-reliant Bangladesh; rural transformation: creating opportunity for all; health service: inclusive delivery option; energy security for sustainable growth; sustainable cities: services and protection for the vulnerable; and quality education for all: preparing for 4th industrial revolution.
On Wednesday, prime minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the event.
She asked the development partners not to set out too many conditions with their assistance to the areas where Bangladesh had started moving forward and urged them to come forward in implementing various long-term plans to ensure sustainable development of the country.
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