Asian Development Bank (ADB) Country Director Manmohan Parkash has said faster and better-quality project implementation could further accelerate the pace of development and spread benefits "more equitably" in Bangladesh.
"Faster project implementation is the key to effective and efficient development," he said complimenting the government on achieving "significant successes" in the last 10 years.
Parkash highlighted three pillars of faster project implementation -- efficient procurement, sound contract management, and good governance.
The ADB organised "Faster Project Implementation Week 2019" at the Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel in the city and BRAC-CDM, Rajendrapur on September
22-25 to catalyse faster and quality implementation of development projects for delivering optimum benefits to the target stakeholders, said the ADB on Thursday.
He said completing projects faster helps people benefit early. "The learning of this week can be applied to all projects, including ADB-assisted projects."
Parkash called for further reforms, including delegation of authority together with higher accountability to operational staff to expedite procurement processes.
He also highlighted ADB's new procurement policy that adopts principle and risk-based approaches, and includes Quality and Value for Money, in addition to Economy, Fairness, Efficiency, and Transparency as the new principles of procurement.
Under contract management, three fundamental aspects-- quality control, time control, and price control were indicated as requirements to successful contract management in procurement, bidding, and project implementation phases.
Parkash also underscored the need for ensuring good governance by conducting proper due diligence, and mitigating fraud, corruption, collusion, and coercion in procurement and contract implementation to achieve better development outcomes.
The Faster Project Implementation Week 2019, with the theme of "Delivering Faster and Better Development Outcomes", focused on collaborative learning and sharing of knowledge on development projects through interactive workshop sessions for government officials involved in development activities.
Md Tazul Islam, Minister of Local Government opened the Week at the Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel on September 22 as the chief guest.
Jeffrey Taylor, Director for ADB's Portfolio and Financial Management Department and Farida Nasreen, Additional Secretary, Economic Relations Division were present at the opening session as special guests.
At the closing ceremony on the first day of the event, Agriculture Minister Abdur Razzaque was the chief guest, while Alvaro Salas, Ambassador of Spain to Bangladesh and Hitoshi Hirata, Chief Representative, Bangladesh Office, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) were special guests.
Over 200 government project directors, project staff, development experts, and representatives of consultants and contractors attended the event.
The participants also discussed the details of how to further improve procurement processes and contract management at the BRAC-CDM, Rajendrapur.
ADB and Bangladesh have a long and enduring partnership of over 46 years.
Bangladesh is the second largest portfolio in ADB, comprising 54 projects under implementation with a current portfolio of over $10 billion.
In the last five years, the volume of ADB operations in Bangladesh tripled.
In 2018, ADB approved the highest level of support of $4.8 billion to Bangladesh, with eight sovereign projects totalling $2.2 billion in loans and grants, $16.5 million in technical assistance, and $2.6 billion mobilized in co-financing.