Web portal

Web portal to help create a factory

Getting started is no less difficult and tedious in a business in Bangladesh than actually doing it. And this is even more true for a foreigner who wants to start a business in this country. But this is not due to a lack of cooperation from anywhere. In fact, it is filling out the necessary paperwork before starting a business that is really exhausting. You have to run from one office to another to meet the most basic requirements such as obtaining a license, issuing a certificate or registering a company. And if the entrepreneur in question plans to set up a factory, the challenges ahead will only get worse.

Thus, to facilitate the creation of a business, whether commercial or manufacturing, it would be important to ensure that information and forms on all document preparation procedures are available on a single platform. In this regard, a report was published by the Monday issue of this newspaper. This was a study that a local policy think tank, in collaboration with an international development partner, conducted on the institutional, operational and legal requirements that entrepreneurs must meet to start a business in Bangladesh in certain sectors of industry. The industrial sectors studied include ready-to-wear (RMG), pharmaceuticals, leather and agri-food. The good news is that the study was worth it, because one of the end products of the exercise is a well-designed web portal. It is believed that this would help potential entrepreneurs to easily access all the necessary information on establishing a factory and the processes for obtaining a license, certificate or registration for this purpose, in particular in the aforementioned industrial sectors.

And in light of the results of said study, experts and entrepreneurs at a recent town hall discussion event were for a cleanup of existing late and complex procedural entanglements in how to start a new business setup, a factory, in particular. It is undeniable that the government has so far taken various measures, including the introduction of a one-stop service by the Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA) as well as other business-friendly initiatives. Even so, these services are not well organized to meet the specific needs of business enterprises of different categories. For example, the needs of an established company and those of a beginner are quite different. And the problems become really difficult, especially for foreign entrepreneurs because the number of offices they have to visit is too high. Worse still, such a visit to a particular office may not be punctual. And things border on the absurd when they are handed forms printed in Bengali to fill out.

Thus, the case of an online facility in the form of a web page containing all the information and guidelines required for the creation of a factory does not need to be explained further. However, the web page thus designed by a private initiative cannot be described as exhaustive or infallible. So there is plenty of room for further enhancements to the web portal. New features, for example, could be added to it, while non-essential ones would be removed. Finally, the government should extend its full support to the web portal designed to facilitate the start-up of a factory by new entrepreneurs. The sooner it is launched for its potential users, the better.