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Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today(Wednesday) called upon the businessmen not to hike the prices of essentials during the upcoming holy month of Ramadan. - A home for your website

The prime minister made the appeal while opening and laying foundation stones of 65 uplift schemes, including 24 economic zones, through a video conference from her official residence Ganobhaban Dhaka.

“Don"t hike the price of essentials including oil, onion, pulse and sugar during the month of Ramadan as the people could practice roza (fasting) in a good manner,” she told the businessmen at the function.

She put emphasized on joint efforts of the public and private organizations to maintain the upward trend of the country"s advancement.

The premier requested the businessmen to work for developing the people"s livelihood of the particular areas and give jobs to the disabled at their mills and factories.

Sheikh Hasina also requested all particularly the Bangladeshi expatriates and foreigners to invest in 100 economic zones in the country.

The premier asked the businessmen not to damage arable land while setting up industries.

In this context, she said the government will fix the places for setting up mill and factories to save the cropland as the country is mainly driven by agriculture and opined that there is no alternative of going for industrialization for overall development.

So, it is necessary to work for industrialization saving the arable land, she mentioned.

The premier said the country has already achieved the status of a developing country due to huge development works carried out by her government in the last decade since 2009.

She said her government has been relentlessly working to make Bangladesh a middle-income country by 2021 and a developed one by 2041 following the footprints of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman who dreamt of poverty and hunger-free country.

In 2020, Bangladesh is set to observe the birth centennial of Bangabandhu, under whose charismatic leadership the country achieved independence in 1971 after a nine-month battle. The Golden Jubilee of the Independence will also be observed in 2021, she said, hoping to observe both the events in hunger and poverty free Bangladesh.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated and laid foundation stones of 65 uplift schemes including 24 economic zones, opening up a new horizon in industrialization and employment for the country"s overall development.

The inaugurated eleven economic zones (suitable for setting up industries) are: Mongla Economic Zone at Mongla in Bagerhat district, Meghna Economic Zone and Meghna Economic Industrial Economic Zone at Sonargaon in Narayanganj, Abdul Monem Economic Zone at Gazaria in Munshiganj, Bay Economic Zone at Gazipur Sadar in Gazipur, Aman Economic Zone at Sonargaon in Narayanganj, City Economic Zone at Rupganj in Narayanganj, Kishoreganj Economic Zone at Pakundia in Kishoreganj, East-West Special Economic Zone at Keraniganj in Dhaka, Karnaphuli Dry Dock Special Economic Zone at Anwara in Chattogram, and Sreehatta Economic Zone at Moulvibazar Sadar in Moulvibazar.

The premier also laid foundation stones of 13 economic zones and work on five development projects under the initiative of BEZA (Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority).

They are: Miresharai, Sitakunda and Feni Economic Zones at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Industrial City in Chattogram and Feni districts, Miresharai Economic Zone-2A at Miresharai in Chattogram, BGMEA Garments Park at Miresharai in Chattogram, Mongla Economic Zone-2 at Mongla at Bagerhat, Moheshkhali Economic Zone (Dhalghata) at Moheshkhali in Cox"s Bazar , Jamalpur Economic Zone at Jamalpur Sadar in Jamalpur and Sirajganj Economic
Zone at Sirajganj and Belkuchi in Sirajganj, Akij Economic Zone at Trishal in Mymensingh, Cumilla Economic Zone at Meghna in Cumilla, Bashundhara Special Economic Zone at Keraniganj in Dhaka, Standard Global Economic Zone at Gazaria in Munshiganj, Hosendi Economic Zone at Gazaria in Munshiganj and Arisha Economic Zone at Keraniganj in Dhaka.

Sheikh Hasina also opened the commercial production of 16 mills and factories and laid foundation stones of 20 others at the function.

The premier earlier opened 10 economic zones in 2016.

PM"s Private Industry and Investment Adviser Salman Fazlur Rahman was present on the dais.

Md. Abdul Kalam Azad, Principal Coordinator for Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Affairs in the Prime Minister"s Office moderated the function while BEZA Executive Chairman Paban Chowdhury gave a brief presentation on the 65 uplift schemes.

A video presentation was screened on the event.

The premier earlier unveiled the cover of a souvenir of the development schemes.

She later exchanged views with the cross-section of people including public representatives, businessmen, government officials, teachers, students, and guardians through the video conference.

The premier said her government has been relentlessly working for reaching results of the huge development works at the grassroots level as each and every person of the country can get foods, healthcare services, accommodation, clothing and education.

She said that she had earlier inaugurated 10 economic zones in 2016 and today she opened 11 economic zones and laid foundation stones of 13 others as part of the initiative of setting up 100 economic zones across the country.

The government has attached topmost priority to building a developed communications system with constructing roads, bridges, new rail lines, airports and purchasing necessary machinery and equipment for attracting more investment in the country.

In this context, she also said, her government is constructing deep sea ports and modernizing the airports and land, river and seaports.

At present power generation is 20,000 megawatt which was only 1600 megawatt during the BNP-Jamaat regime, she said, adding that the GDP growth and per capita income will be 8.13 per cent and $ 1909 respectively this year while the poverty rate has been reduced to 21 per cent from 41 due to the timely measures taken by her government.

The main objective of all her development works is to create employment as no one can stay behind, she mentioned.

Stressing the need for formulating an appropriate plan, the premier said it has already proved that a country could step forward towards development and progress if it is run by a time-befitting plan.