Bangladesh has targeted 8.37 percent economic growth on average for the eighth five-year plan. Priority will be given to high growth, creating employment, and reducing poverty and inequality at the meeting of the Bangladesh Development Forum (BDF) to be held on January 29.
The government will also seek funds from development partners so that the existing growth is sustained in the eighth five-year plan covering 2021-2025.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will inaugurate the two-day event.
At a pre-event press briefing organised by the Economic Relations Division (ERD) of the finance ministry, ERD Secretary Monowar Ahmed said, "We will focus on maintaining transparency not only from our side but from the development agencies too."
Funds from international agencies should come through the government instead of NGOs to maintain transparency, he added.
The utilisation of project funds depends on both parties, and the fund agreement should be unconditional for the proper utilisation of foreign aid, he further said.
Dr Samsul Alam, a member of the general economic division of the planning commission, told The Business Standard, "In the last year of the eighth five-year, our growth is projected to be 8.51 percent, whereas it was 8.15 percent in the last fiscal year."
In response to the achievements in the previous five-year plan, Monowar said, "We could not monitor the seventh five-year plan by ourselves. However, we will form committees to regularly monitor the progress of the next plan."
He also said, "A total of $49b was in the pipeline from development partners until November last year. Around $10.8b worth of loans for the implementation of 69 projects await signing with the development partners."
"Under IDA-19 of the World Bank and Jica's 41 packages, the loan amount can be revised if we can properly present our needs to the development agencies," he added.
He further said, "The decision on 41 packages of ODA of Jica has not been finalised yet. An agreement in this regard will be signed in June."
In response to a query on the country's graduation to a middle-income country affecting the condition of loans, ERD secretary said, "There might be little effects on loan conditions. We have recently successfully coped with the revised terms and conditions of loans provided by development agencies.
Many new sources are eager to provide us loans because the World Bank has been implementing our model of poverty alleviation in other regions, he added.