ECNEC clears Tk 1616cr project to shift chemical godowns

The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) on Tuesday approved the first revision of the BSCIC Chemical Industrial Park, Munshiganj Project with an outlay of Tk 1,615.73 crore in a bid to relocate the chemical industries and godowns of Old Dhaka in to an environment-friendly place in Munshiganj. The approval came from the ECNEC meeting held at the NEC Conference Room in the city’s Sher-e-Bangla Nagar area with ECNEC Chairperson and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair.

Briefing the reporters after the meeting, Planning Minister MA Mannan said that a total of 7 projects were approved today involving an overall estimated cost of Taka 10,115.77 crore. “Of the total project cost, Taka 4,405.78 crore will come from the Government of Bangladesh portion, Taka 489.50 crore from the organization’s own fund while the rest of Taka 5,220.49 crore from project assistance,”

Of the approved seven projects, three are new while the four others are revised projects. The Planning Minister said that the BSCIC Chemical Industrial Park, Munshiganj Project has been revised following the recent fire incident at Churihatta at Old Dhaka. He said that Bangladesh Small and Cottage Industries Corporation (BSCIC) will implement the project by June 2022.

He said that the main objectives of the project are to relocate the chemical factories and godowns of old Dhaka in an environment-friendly and less populated area in Munshiganj. For that, a Chemical Industrial Park would be set up on some 310 acres of land at Sirajdikhan in Munshiganj. The park will accommodate some 2,154 Industrial plots which is expected to create some 50,000 employment opportunities.

Under the project, all sorts of infrastructure facilities would be ensured at the Industrial Park. According to the Planning Commission, there are some 4,000 chemical industries and godowns at old Dhaka and those poses high risk to the citizens of those areas due to flammable and explosive nature of chemicals there.

Besides, this project was also framed considering the Nimtoli fire incident on June 3, 2010 in old Dhaka and the latest Churihatta fire incident in old Dhaka on February 20 this year. The day’s ECNEC meeting also approved the construction of godowns for preserving chemicals on temporary basis with Taka 79.42 crore.

Bangladesh Chemical Industries Corporation (BCIC) will implement the project by June 2020 under which temporary chemical godowns would be set up at Shyampur in Kadamtali. Planning Minister Mannan said Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the meeting asked the authorities concerned to complete the development projects within the stipulated timeframe.

Renewing her stance that there would remain no chemical factory and godown in old Dhaka, the Premier also said that only chemical industries should have to be set up and relocated in the Chemical Industrial Park in Munshiganj. Referring to the approval of the Chattogram -Feni-Bakhrabad gas transmission parallel pipeline construction project, 1st Revised, with Taka 2,479.41 crore, the Prime Minister asked the authorities concerned to mark those lands under which the gas transmission lines would go.

Sheikh Hasina also suggested avoiding arable land while acquiring land for any development project side by side putting due emphasis on technical and vocational education. Regarding the approval of the construction of Samaj Kalyan Bhaban with Taka 74.48 crore, the Prime Minister asked the concerned executing agency and the architect to ensure sufficient ventilation and fire extinguishing measures in that building.

The other projects approved in the meeting are Siddhirganj 335 MW combined cycle power plant project, 3rd Revised with Taka 3,971.29 crore, Skills and Training Enhancement Project, 3rd Revised with Taka 1,747.88 crore, Choralkata River Straitening and Buriteesta River Bank Protection under Nilphamari district with Taka 147.56 crore.