Experts observed that high duty on raw materials, lack of advanced technology and initiatives of market expansion both in domestic and international level are hitting hard the country’s light engineering sector(LES).
Despite having immense potential, the sector suffers a setback due to lack of necessary infrastructure facility, limited access to bank loans and absence of policy support from the government, they noted.
Their observations were made at a seminar styled ‘Importance of Expansion of Light Engineering Products to Achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)’, jointly organised by Business Promotion Council (BPC) and Bangladesh Engineering Industry Owners' Association (BEIOA).
AHM Shafiquzzaman, additional secretary of the Ministry of Commerce and the coordinator of Business Promotion Council and, was present at the function as the chief guest.
Abdur Razzaque, president of the BEIOA, chaired the event, while Md Habibur Rahman, adviser to the BEIOA, presented a keynote paper.
Members of the BEIOA took part in the open discussion.
Some 10,000 types of products, especially spare parts of different sectors like agriculture, garments, textile and jute mills, paper mills, poultry farms etc are manufactured in the light engineering units.
LES is recognised as 'the mother of all industries' because it provides backup support for spare parts and repair to almost all industrial sectors, including plastic, cement, paper, jute, textile, sugar, food processing, railway, shipping, and garments.
The Export Promotion Bureau (BPB) data showed that engineering products fetched $293 million in the fiscal year 2019-2020 (FY20).
LE sector provides employment to 600,000 people involved in 50,000 microenterprises and 10,000 small and medium enterprises (SMEs).