Finance minister AHM Mustafa Kamal on Thursday proposed an allocation of TK 3,688 crore for Civil Aviation and Tourism Ministry, up by Tk 271 crore from the last fiscal year’s revised allocation of Tk 3,417 crore,
The minister came up with the proposal while unveiling the national budget for the 2020-21 fiscal year in parliament.
He said the increased allocation has been given with a target to build a modern aviation system and develop the tourism as modern economic sector.
“The government has taken effective steps to build a world-class civil aviation system to ensure safe, efficient and dependable fast passenger and goods transport,” the minister said.
As part of the plan to improve the standard and scope of passenger and cargo-handling capacity of the country’s international airports, he said work on building the third terminal at Hazrat Shah Jalal International Airport is underway, and the work on upgrading Cox's Bazar and Saidpur airports into international ones is progressing fast.
Besides, Kamal said, plans have been taken to build the Khan Jahan Ali Airport in Bagerhat, and expand and refurbish the Jessore, Saidpur, Barishal, and Rajshai Shah Makhdum Airports.
He said plans have also been taken up to establish an international standard Civil Aviation Institute in the country, expand the aircraft fleet of Bangladesh Biman and increase its weekly frequencies on different profitable routes, and expand or reestablish its services to high demand routes, such as Quangzhou, Chennai, Colombo, Tokyo, Toronto, Bahrain, Sharjah, New York and Salalah. 118.
About the tourism, the minister said following the directives of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, various steps have been taken to turn the tourism industry into a developed and modern economic sector.
“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 facilities for incoming tourists,” he mentioned.
Besides, projects have been taken up for the modernisation and capacity enhancement of the existing establishments of Bangladesh Tourism Corporation, and for expanding modern tourism facilities in new locations. “The government will put in sincere efforts to ensure that the tourism industry of our country recovers from the huge losses that it suffered due to the COVID-19 pandemic.”