The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is expected to make available financial assistance with US$ 4.20 billion over a period of next three years for developing Bangladesh’s infrastructure and alleviating poverty, officials said on Friday.
A team from the Manila-based lender is likely to visit Bangladesh early next month to hold discussions with the relevant government agencies for finalising its country operations plan, said an official of the Economic Relations Division (ERD).
He said the ADB will prepare a Country Operations Business Plan (COBP) 2020-2022 for Bangladesh, under which the organisation will operate its upcoming lending programmes.
The ADB is the second largest multilateral development partner of Bangladesh, helping the country to develop its infrastructure and improve socio-economic conditions.
“The ADB has proposed to provide some $1.4 billion worth of funds on an average in each of the three calendar years from 2020 to 2022 in the draft COBP,” the ERD official further said.
Out of the $1.4 billion assistance, the ADB has proposed to provide loan amounting to $550-$600 million from its soft window – concessional OCR loan (COL), and the rest $800-$850 million from its hard-term window – ordinary capital resources (OCR), he added.
According to the proposed COBP, the ADB has laid the highest emphasis on energy and transport, education, private sector development, agriculture and rural development, and water supply improvement in the next three years.
Another ERD official said the ADB mission visits Bangladesh every year to update its country operations plan.
The mission, during its visit next month, will update the current COBP, and will also frame the next three years’ rolling plan for facilitating Bangladesh’s development activities through consulting with the authorities concerned, he added.
“We will seek higher support from the ADB in our next meeting, as Bangladesh requires a huge amount of investment for implementing its ongoing and upcoming large- and medium-sized projects.”
The ERD official said the government will also focus on its own development plans and Vision 2021, which are formulated to make the country a higher middle-income one.
The official said the ADB team will sit with the ERD and other ministries concerned for finalising its proposed COBP.
In 2018, the country’s second largest development partner confirmed some $2.1 billion worth of funds.
In that year, it disbursed assistance amounting to some $1.2 billion against different ongoing projects and programmes in Bangladesh.