Breaking all the previous records, Bangladesh’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate has reached 7.24 percent this fiscal year buoyed by the robust growth in the industrial sector. “The GDP growth in the outgoing fiscal year (FY17) reached 7.24 perce nt which was 7.11 percent in the last fiscal year (FY16),” said pla nning minister AHM Mustafa Kamal quoting the provisional estimate of the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS). Kamal was addressing a media briefing after the day’s National Economic Council (NEC) meeting held at the NEC conference room in the capital. He said the country had been trying very hard to raise the GDP growth to over 7 percent for the last couple of years although some civil society members and some economists were skeptical about achieving the 7 percent growth rate. “But, like the previous year, the GDP growth in this year exceeded the 7 percent mark,” he added. Bangladesh has been maintaining over 6 percent GDP growth rate on average for the last few years as the growth rate in FY13 was 6.01 percent, while it was 6.06 percent in FY14 and 6.55 percent in FY15. As per the BBS provisional estimate, the per capita income also rose to USD1,602 in the outgoing fiscal year which was USD1,465 in the p revious financial year. The GDP size in the outgoing fiscal at curren t prices was estimated at BDT19.56 trillion while the GNI stood at BDT20.38 trillion.
Terming the attainment of this 7.24 percent growth an ‘outstanding feat’ for the country, Mustafa Kamal said no other country in the world except India could exceed over 7 per cent growth in the outgoin g fiscal year. He also said the government will aim to achieve a 7.4 percent GDP growth rate in the next fiscal year (FY18), while the target in FY20 will be set at 8 percent. About the investment ratio to GDP which had long been hovering below 30 percent, the planning minister said the rate was 30.27 percent in the outgoing fiscal year which was 29. 65 percent in the previous fiscal year. Out of this investment ratio, the bulk of 23.01 percent investment ratio to GDP was witnessed by the private sector while the rest of 7.26 percent by the public sector.