Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday said no state-owned industry will be leased out or be sold, and ordered taking back those the operation of which could not be resumed by private entrepreneurs.
She came up with the government decision while exchanging views with high officials of the Textiles and Jute Ministry at the Secretariat as part of her initiative to visit all ministries.
The Prime Minister directed the Textiles and Jute Ministry to take necessary steps for taking back the leased out or sold state-owned industries from the private entrepreneurs who could not resume the operation of those as they had committed.
Hasina also asked the ministry to find out ways for allocating huge unused lands of government-owned industries to private entrepreneurs only for producing, processing and development of jute goods on small plots to ensure the best use of lands.
She said the government's aim is to ensure the welfare of workers and reopened many closed jute mills to rehabilitate the workers during her 1996-2001 term.
Hasina said her government reopened nine textiles mills with the joint ownership of industry owners, potential investors and workers. But this initiative could not yield positive results as the successive government did not provide necessary support to this end.
In this context, she came down heavily on BNP-Jamaat government for closing the Adamjee Jute Mills, the biggest one in South Asia, with the World Bank prescription, during their 2001-2006 term, putting over one crore people dependent on it into serious miseries.
But, Hasina said, her government promoted the jute sector by allocating adequate funds for the development of jute that resulted in the decoding of genome sequencing of jute by Bangladeshi scientists.
She laid emphasis on innovating more improved variety of jute and high quality fibre through intensive research.
Referring to the huge demand for jute and jute goods across the world with increased awareness of people about environment, Hasina said her government has been able to increase the number of export items taking advantage of the growing demand for environment-friendly products and asked the ministry to procure modern machinery, if necessary, to produce quality jute goods.
She also mentioned that her government enacted a law to use jute bags mandatory for packaging.
Hasina suggested producing high quality sarees, suit pieces, curtains and carpets and other goods from jute to capture the market abroad.
Mentioning that her government introduced loans for small and handloom industries from 1996, the Prime Minister said apart from supplying capital necessary, measures should be taken for marketing their products to ensure their socioeconomic development.
From 2009 to 2014, she said, her government managed to fulfil the basic needs of people to some extent and is now working to improve the living standard of the common people.
The Prime Minister asked the ministry officials and employees to work with utmost sincerity and honesty from their respective positions keeping the welfare of people and development of the country above everything.
Despite global economic meltdown, Hasina said, her government maintained a steady GDP growth of over 6 per cent during the last five years and Bangladesh is now on the list of 10 emerging economies of the world.
The Prime Minister sought cooperation of all in turning Bangladesh into a middle-income country by 2021 and a front-ranking developed one by 2041.
Textiles and Jute Minister Emaj Uddin Pramanik and Secretary of the Ministry Foni Bhushon Chowdhury also spoke on the occasion. ?UNB