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Election year slows project execution

Recast of ADP gets going

FHM HUMAYAN KABIR | November 21, 2023 00:00:00

Recasting the current Annual Development Programme (ADP) with a possible trimming of allocations gests going and stakeholder consultations are slated for early next month.

Officials Monday said the Economic Relations Division (ERD) started work to revise the ADP of the current fiscal year (FY) 2023-24 and would sit with all ministries and agencies from early December.

The ERD envisages revision of the project-aid part of the Tk2.74-trillion ADP.

"We will start consultation with the ministries and divisions on December 10. The discussions will continue four days up to December 14," said a senior ERD official.

On the first day, the division high-ups will sit with 10 ministries and agencies, including Power Division and Water Resources Ministry of the government, for the revision of the foreign-aid part in the ADP, he added.

In the current FY2024, the government framed a Tk2.74-trillion ADP where Tk940 billion has been allocated from project aid.

The ADP allocation from government exchequer was Tk 1.69 trillion and from the own funds of autonomous and semi-autonomous bodies Tk 116.74 billion. The government every fiscal year revises the ADP in the second half mostly for failure in optimal project implementation by the ministries and agencies.

In the last fiscal, FY2023, the ERD cut the PA allocations by Tk185 billion in the revised ADP in the second half of the fiscal from an original allocation of Tk 930 billion in the Tk 2.56-trillion ADP.

Another ERD official said, "The PA is likely to be cut in the upcoming RADP, too, as some of the ministries are informing us that they do not need total funds allocated in the original ADP." "Moreover, it is an election year where the project implementation will go a bit slow and no fresh projects will be approved in the next three months in the run-up to the polls," he added.

Project aid means the fund allocation against different projects from loans and grants coming from bilateral and multilateral development partners.

In the last FY2023, the development partners provided Bangladesh nearly US$9.0 billion worth of funds most of which are invested 'project aid' for implementing different projects.

Asked about the revision, the ERD official said they were hopeful of having the revised ADP within two months.

Meanwhile, the Planning Commission has yet to start redoing arithmetic of the current development budget.

A senior PC official says they would ask the ministries and divisions shortly for sending the revised project-allocation requirements aimed at revising the current Tk2.74-trillion ADP.

The RADP for the current FY2024 will be finalised by February, he added.

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