The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has urged the government to accelerate the implementation of ongoing projects supported by the lender, maintaining the highest standard of health and safety protocols to avoid Covid-19 risks.
The ADB has also recommended expediting the approval of new projects and a revision process for stagnant projects to achieve better outcomes.
The recommendations came at a tripartite portfolio review meeting (TPRM) held virtually on Wednesday.
Fatima Yasmin, secretary to the Economic Relations Division (ERD), and Manmohan Parkash, ADB country director, co-chaired the event.
Around 300 senior government officials, project directors and ADB staff members participated in the second such review meeting this year, revealed a press release issued by the ADB's Dhaka office.
The regional development bank has proposed carrying out special actions to ensure faster delivery of project results in compliance with the highest standard of health regulations.
Officials participating in the meeting told The Business Standard that the ADB has proposed a health safety guideline to be followed at the sites of the projects financed by the agency to minimise the risk of Covid-19.
The government has agreed to follow those health safety issues, they said.
In his address, Manmohan Parkash said faster project implementation is the key to expediting post-pandemic socio-economic recovery by delivering enhanced development benefits to the people early and quickly.
As the economy shows early signs of recovery, concerted efforts, and special measures by the line ministries and the project executing agencies concerned can help speed up economic recovery and job creation, he added.
The ADB country director added that expeditious procurement, engaging good consultants and contractors, effective contract management, properly managing land acquisition and resettlement, sound financial management, as well as prudent project design can help achieve better project outcomes.
He also recommended the government speed up the approval for Development Project Proposals (DPP) and revision of slow ongoing projects.
"We have agreed to implement special actions to ensure faster delivery of project results by maintaining the highest standard of health and safety protocols to avoid Covid-19 risks in project implementation," Parkash added.
According to the release, the special actions for enhancing project performance include accelerating approval and paying mobilisation advances for large contracts, implementing health safety guidelines and offering virtual training opportunities to the project staff and beneficiaries.