With the huge potential of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and the repeated private sector interventions in the country's agribusiness, the local processed food market will be worth $5.8 billion by 2030, said a report by the Foreign Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) on Wednesday.
The report titled "Growth Drivers of Bangladesh: Accelerating Investment Opportunities in Agribusiness, Digital Economy, and Green Finance", in association with the Policy Exchange of Bangladesh, was unveiled at a consultation meeting in Dhaka with stakeholders.
It focused on agribusiness, digital economy, and green financing for climate-smart investments.
According to the report, 68% of the country's population will live in the cities by 2050 and this will increase the demand for processed food.
In addition, 34 million people are going to be in the middle and affluent class by 2025, which will also accelerate the expansion of the processed food market. The changing pattern of lifestyle is increasing the trend day by day, the report added.
Urbanisation affects food consumption patterns— higher urban income is reflected in increased demand for processed food and meat by 2050. Agricultural production will need to increase by 70% due to increase in population, it said.
On the occasion, FICCI President Rupali Haque Chowdhury said the organisation has plans to continue the momentum of the three growth drivers to bring in more FDI and to have more engagement with the government.
Bangladesh's resiliency and prosperity can be attributed to a number of causes, including increased private sector involvement, remittances, economic liberalization, and trade integration.
Building on its achievements, Bangladesh intends to become an upper-middle-income country by 2031 and a developed country by 2041, but it must initially overcome fundamental high-level economic restrictions, she added.
Founder and Chairman of Policy Exchange of Bangladesh Dr M Masrur Reaz said that the government has been working tirelessly over several years to build Bangladesh as a developed and resourceful country, and it is attempting to move forward with various plans through which opportunities such as increasing employment, FDI, and other business opportunities are heading along the way.
Now, Bangladesh has to perform better in certain areas and the vital role would be to expand FDI, step up revenue mobilisation and economic diversification. We have set a benchmark for three drivers as Vietnam for agribusiness, India and Indonesia for Digital Economy and China for Green Financing, he added.
By 2050, technology will dominate the workplace with artificial intelligence and smart assistants being common, while the use of augmented and virtual reality continues to increase. And upcoming 5G networks will allow for more high-capacity services like telehealth, tele-surgery and ER services, they added.
Mentioning the International Labor Organization's statistics for the global market, speakers at the event said the green bond market could be worth over 2.3trillion by 2023.
The country's 8th Five Year Plan aims to accelerate economic development and align it with its ambitions through stronger trade and investment. In accordance with the plan the target increases by 2025 in FDI is by six times, export by 66% and private investment to GDP by 15%.