Saudi Arabia: Saudi Arabia and Bangladesh have come to an agreement for forming a fertilizer factory in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen shared this news after meeting with Saudi Commerce Minister Majid bin Abdullah Al-Kassabi. The joint initiative aims to create a beneficial partnership between the two countries, making use of their respective resources and skills.
"We want to invest in a fertilizer factory in Saudi Arabia. The production cost will be low, and we can benefit from that. They have agreed [to the proposal]," he stated.
Saudi Commerce Minister Al-kassabi is currently in Dhaka participating in the Bangladesh Business Summit 2023. The event, which was inaugurated yesterday at the Bangabandhu International Conference Center (BICC), comes as Bangladesh seeks to secure supplies of fertilizer, energy, and food commodities following disruptions caused by the Russia-Ukraine war and Covid-19 pandemic.
Bangladesh Chemical Industries Corporation and Hanwha Saudi Contracting Company have signed a memorandum of understanding to explore the feasibility of setting up a Diammonium Phosphate (DAP) fertilizer plant in Saudi Arabia.
It is the first initiative taken by the Bangladeshi government to establish an industrial plant abroad, which is set to be jointly owned by both countries. The venture will supply much-needed fertilizer in Bangladesh, which requires 1.6 million tonnes of DAP annually.
Bangladesh has recently been in conversation with Saudi Arabia with the intention of setting up a fertilizer urea-based factory. The Kingdom has an abundance of raw materials and funds to allocate, making it the perfect partner for such a venture. The discussions were discussed between Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's Private Industry Investment Adviser Salman F Rahman and Saudi Commerce Minister Dr Majid bin Abdullah Al-kassabi and Saudi Basic Industries Corporation CEO Yousef Abdullah Al-Benyan back in March 2021. Given that Bangladesh is now more economically stable than ever, this partnership could be hugely beneficial for both sides, creating jobs for Bangladeshi citizens and encouraging foreign investments into the country.
The government has established organizations like the Bangladesh Investment Development Authority and the Bangladesh Economic Zone Authority in order to promote economic growth.
"We are also asking the foreign investors to invest in Bangladesh. This is a 170 million people's market. The production cost is low here as we have an affordable, hardworking and skilled workforce."
Foreigners are taking a keen interest in Bangladesh, with South Korean Special Presidential Envoy for "Future Strategy" Jang Sung Min visiting the country and announcing plans to invest up to $100 billion. This follows other projects started by Saudi authorities in Patenga, Chattogram after Bangladesh offered them land. It's clear that the future is looking bright for Bangladesh.
"We wanted them to invest in a major project. We offered a special economic zone in Chattogram. They will start working soon," Momen stated.
Saudi Arabia is looking to invest in energy, port and airport development, according to the statement.