Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (Bida) Executive Chairman Md Sirazul Islam requested four electricity providers to keep their word on providing new power connections within 28 days through Bida.
The four power distributors–Dhaka Power Distribution Company, Bangladesh Rural Electrification Board, Northern Electricity Supply Company, and West Zone Power Distribution Company Limited–signed an agreement with the Bida One Stop Service (OSS) portal Tuesday.
In the memoranda of understanding (MoUs), the distributors promised to provide investors with new power connections within 28 days of applying through the Bida OSS.
Bida Executive Chairman Sirazul Islam, at the MoU signing ceremony, said both domestic and foreign entrepreneurs are looking for fast, quality and hassle-free services for investments. There is no alternative to completing one-stop services to attract new investments.
Managing directors of the power suppliers signed the MoUs on behalf of their respective companies. The event was told that Dhaka Electric Supply Company and Bangladesh Power Development Board had already signed deals with Bida.
Sirazul Islam, who chaired the MoU signing ceremony, said foreign investment inflows will help the government achieve its goal to be a developed country. Easy, hassle-free, faster, and transparent services must be ensured to attain the target.
In a brief discussion on Bida OSS, Bida Director (One Stop Service and Regulatory Reform) Jibon Krishna Saha Roy said they signed a deal with Business Automation Limited in September, 2018 to provide all kinds of services online to local and foreign investors.
In light of the deal, Bida launched the OSS portal in February last year with a promise to provide more than 154 services from 35 organizations through the online platform.
Roy said Bida so far has signed agreements with 20 service providers including the four new power distributors.
The event was told that the OSS is currently providing 21 services. Of them, Bida itself renders 14 services while other agencies provide the other seven. Another 45 services are awaiting integration to the Bida OSS.
Dr Sultan Ahmed, secretary to the Power Division, said the government will reach all families across the country with electricity connections. The transmission and distribution system would also be modernised in order to establish a consistent electricity network.
Major General (Retd) Moin Uddin, chairman of the Bangladesh Rural Electrification Board; Engineer Bikash Dewan, managing director of the Dhaka Electric Supply Company; Engr Md Shafique Uddin, managing director of the West Zone Power Distribution Company Limited; and Zakiul Islam, managing director of the Northern Electricity Supply Company, among others, spoke at the occasion.
Apart from improving the country's business environment, Bida officials hoped the OSS will help Bangladesh improve its position on the World Bank's Ease of Doing Business Index.
Bangladesh ranked 168th among 190 countries on the World Bank's latest Ease of Doing Business Index. A low numerical value in the index means a higher ranking which indicates a better business environment.
Bida officials said the one-stop service system will enable Bangladesh to achieve a two-digit position–if it is implemented properly.