The Meghna Industrial Economic Zone, located near the Dhaka-Chattagram Highway in Narayanganj’s Sonargaon, is one of 11 privately owned economic zones. Approved in 2017 by the Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority (Beza), the 90-acre industrial hub saw its first factory establishment by Meghna Beverage in late 2018. In the following year, the two Australian companies TIC Manufacturing and TIC Industries Pty. went into operation.
Currently, the Meghna Industrial Economic Zone has 12 facilities in operation of which 10 are local and 4 facilities are by foreign companies. The subsidiaries of the Meghna Group account for the majority of the ten local businesses. The Economic Zone is home to seven companies of the local conglomerate Meghna Group. The other local companies in the economic area are Thai Foils and Polymer Industries, S2S Chemicals Limited, and Meghna Star Cables and Electrical Appliances Limited (not a concern of Meghna Group).
Meanwhile, the twelve foreign companies from seven countries finalized agreements to put their money in the industrial hub. Along with the Australian companies, Sakata Inx of Japan and Siegwerk Limited of Germany also have begun production at the economic zone. The two Australian companies invested $17.5 million, while the highest investment came from two Chinese firms by investing $23 million. Among the Chinese investors Ismatu Technology, has invested the highest amount of $18.00 million to produce mobile handsets & accessories and expected to go operational by June this year. Apart from these investment the Meghna Industrial Economic Zone, also received $16.056 million from Indian Sun Pharmaceuticals along with three German firms investing $15.9 million followed by two Japanese firms investing $14 million; a Swiss firm investing $6 million and a Norwegian company making a $5 million investment in the industrial hub. The total investment in the Meghna Industrial Economic Zone stood at $400 million, of which the local companies made $300 million investment, while the foreign investment amounted for $100 million.
Shaikh Yusuf Harun, executive chairman of the Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority (Beza), told “We saw nine foreign companies investing in the Meghna Industrial Economic Zone during the pandemic, while some started operations, proving the country has a good investment atmosphere.” He hopes that foreign investment would inspire other companies to invest in economic zones. Meanwhile the senior deputy general manager of Meghna Group of Industries, Suman Bhowmik, mentioned that as the industrial zone is equipped with all the modern amenities and facilities, more foreign investors are interested in investing in the hub. Moreover, being near the capital city, the transportation system is much easier, making it a more lucrative attraction for investors.
According to the authorities, as many local and foreign investors are interested in setting up their facilities in the economic zone, the land is being expanded by 33 more acres, making the total project size 123 acres. Sumon Bhoumik also added that “In the next one and a half years, we hope the investment in the zone will be increased to $700 million and create employment opportunities for around 16,000 people.” The completion of the project will lead to substantial growth in the country’s economy and have a considerable impact on the country’s overall GDP.