A view of the golden fields in one of the popular tourist destinations of the country Bandarban - Photo: M Yousuf Tushar/National Geographic
Dhaka: Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal proposed an allocation of BDT 3,688 crore for the Civil Aviation and Tourism Ministry while unveiling the national budget for the fiscal year 2020-2021 in the parliament on June 11.
The latest allocation sees an up by BDT 271 crore from the last fiscal's revised allocation of BDT 3,417 crore for the ministry.
He said the increased allocation has been given with a target to build a modern aviation system and develop the tourism as a modern economic sector.
“The government has taken effective steps to build a world-class civil aviation system to ensure safe, efficient and dependable fast transport of passenger and goods,” Kamal said.
As part of the plan to improve the standard and scope of passenger and cargo-handling capacity of the country’s international airports, the Finance Minister said that works on building the Third Terminal at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport is underway, while up-gradation works of Cox's Bazar and Saidpur airports for turning them into international ones are progressing fast.
Besides, Kamal mentioned that plans have been taken to build the Khan Jahan Ali Airport in Bagerhat, and expand and refurbish the Jashore, Saidpur, Barishal, and Rajshai Shah Makhdum airports.
He further stated that plans for establishing an international standard Civil Aviation Institute in the country, expanding the aircraft fleet of Biman Bangladesh Airlines, increasing its weekly frequencies on different profitable routes, and expanding or reestablishing its services to high demand routes, such as Guangzhou, Chennai, Colombo, Tokyo, Toronto, Bahrain, Sharjah, New York and Salalah are also underway.
About tourism, the Finance Minister claimed, “Plans have been formulated to establish exclusive tourism areas for foreign tourists in locations that have high tourism potentials, develop eco-tourism parks keeping the natural beauty intact, build island-based tourism parks and hotels, and establish international standard tourism centers with all the facilities for inbound tourists.”
Moreover, projects for the modernisation and capacity enhancement of the existing establishments of Bangladesh Tourism Corporation, and expansion of modern tourism facilities in new locations have also been taken up.
“The government will put in sincere efforts to ensure that the tourism industry of our country recovers from the huge losses it suffered following the coronavirus pandemic.”