British High Commissioner to Bangladesh Robert Chatterton Dickson said private capital investment in business and infrastructure will play an increasing role in powering the next stage of Bangladesh's growth after the Least Developed Country (LDC) graduation.
At a webinar Thursday also joined by Planning Minister MA Mannan, Dickson highlighted the role the City of London can play in helping to bridge the investment needs of Bangladesh's private sector.
He said, "Developing new channels of investment finance, both domestic and international, will spur business growth and job creation."
"The City of London, as a preeminent global financial centre and home to some of the world's deepest and most sophisticated international capital markets, can play an important part in providing Bangladesh's government and private sector with a gateway to capital markets and investors. This meeting brings together experts, investors and practitioners to consider the next steps in maximising these opportunities," he added.
The webinar explored the functioning of Bangladesh's capital markets and looked at how capital market reform and financial sector modernisation in partnership with the UK can support increased private sector investment and help Bangladesh achieve sustained economic growth as it enters its next 50 years.
The webinar highlighted the need for broadening and deepening Bangladeshi capital markets and the opportunities for investors and issuers that reforms could bring.
Participants shared insights on the role of regulators, the important role pension funds and institutional investors could play, the private equity and start-up ecosystem, and the current state of the mergers and acquisition market.
Srini Nagarajan, head of Asia for CDC, the UK's development finance institution, said, "The opportunities for investors and businesses are abundant, and a greater coordination between institutional investors, regulators, entrepreneurs and corporates, and banks will further support capital market development in Bangladesh."
Nuzhat Anwar, acting country manager of International Finance Corporation (IFC), said, "Well-developed domestic capital markets can be key to building more resilient financial systems – systems that better mobilise local currency finance from domestic and foreign investors and connect them to investments."
The webinar was attended by senior government officials and representatives from private and public sector organisations.