Published in The Daily Observer on Tuesday, 25 August 2015.
The government has moved to implement ADP projects countrywide, including the big ones, according to Planning Commission officials.
“To this end, project directors will be appointed through interviews this fiscal year. The Planning Commission will monitor all development projects round the clock,” Planning Minister AHM Mutafa Kamal told the Daily Observer.
He also said project directors will be imparted proper training from November next to expedite implementation of their projects.
The Minister hinted at delisting some projects from the Annual Development Programme, as those became redundant and non-functional with the passage of time.
Meanwhile, the Planning Commission has emphasized implementation of the Tk 78,000 crore ADP of the last fiscal year. But at the end of the last fiscal year, ADP involving Tk 71,139 crore has been implemented. The percentage of implementation was 91 per cent. For this reason, the Planning Commission has taken initiatives to implement the ADP and big projects within the stipulated time.
The Commission will arrange a meeting today (Tuesday) with stakeholders for the implementation of the strategy and action plan to achieve the ADP targets for this fiscal year.
Officials said the government implemented 91 per cent of the ADP in the last fiscal year (2014-15), which was 93 per cent in the previous fiscal year (2013-14) although the year was battered by persistent political turmoil.
On the backdrop of a flagging private investment, public investment is seen as a major growth driver in a developing country like Bangladesh. The government is attaching importance to public investments as well, with undertaking bigger ADP outlays every year.
Professor Mustafizur Rahman, Executive Director of the Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD), told the Daily Observer, “At the beginning of the year, the ministries and divisions don’t show interest to implement the ADP since long. But at the end of the year they spend the budget quickly. It badly effects the quality of the projects.”
“The main reason behind such a poor ADP implementation performance in FY 2014-15 was that the mega projects failed to get enough momentum,” said Dr Zaid Bakht, a renowned development analyst.
He said that Improving the ADP implementation rate, ensuring quality of government projects, enhancing capacity of implementing agencies would be the key issues in the coming days.