Five of the seven companies the deal was signed with are foreign-owned, while the remaining two are Bangladeshi firms
The Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority (Bepza) has inked a $56.33 million new investment agreement with seven companies during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
Five of the seven companies are owned by foreign entrepreneurs from South Korea, Sri Lanka, and China, while the remaining two are Bangladeshi firms.
The enterprises, operating in eight export processing zones (EPZs) under Bepza, exported goods worth $3,913.14 million from January to August this year. The actual investment stood at $169.91 million in those enterprises during that period, according to a Bepza press release.
Bepza officials said the whole world had become almost stagnant at present due to the pandemic. During this crisis, Bepza had tried its best to keep the Bangladesh's economy moving forward and to ensure uninterrupted production in the EPZs by maintaining social distancing measures.
They also said the Bepza had instructed and monitored the enterprises in EPZs to strictly maintain health hygiene rules from the beginning of the pandemic.
Apart from following the EPZ labour act strictly, Bepza also ensured timely payment of wages, bonuses, dues, and other benefits of EPZ workers without terminating them illegally during the pandemic.
The enterprises in EPZs had maintained health protection, hand washing and sanitising arrangements, medical facilities, disinfection tunnel in factories, restriction of visitors' entry inside the zones, and a safe working environment as per the directions of Bepza.
Besides producing traditional items, some enterprises in EPZs started making personal protective equipment to meet the demand of time with full safety and security.
These healthcare products have been used in the country and have also been exported abroad, according to Bepza officials.