On the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly meetings, the US-Bangladesh Business Council hosted the virtual business roundtable with prime minister Sheikh Hasina and over 30 senior executives from the US and the Bangladesh business community.

Joy said together with 4G and 5G they are trying to solve the problem and increase the bandwidth at the last mile as there is plenty of capacity and fibers (optical fiber) within the country. “Bangladesh actually doesn't have a shortage of capacity and bandwidth.”

He said people (users in the last mile) are not connected with the internet through fixed or land lines rather they use mobile internet. “So, the challenges we face is spectrum incapacity. Because of our population density, we need a lot of spectrum and just shared additional spectrum in auction, and we’re in the process of freeing more spectrum for the mobile operators.”

Mentioning that they have launched 4G a few years ago, he said they are hoping that the additional spectrum will allow the mobile phone operators to take 4G to the rural areas (last mile).

US-Bangladesh Business president and senior vice president for the US Chamber of Commerce president Nisha Biswal said the US-Bangladesh strategic relationship is a priority for both countries and the growing trade and investment flows have created an opportunity to deepen the economic partnership between the two countries.

“We know there’s much more that can be done to improve the ease of investing and the ease of doing business but we are bullish on Bangladesh and believe the US-Bangladesh Business Council can help advance economic opportunities that benefit the Bangladeshi people and the American people,” she said.

The council and their Board reflect a diversity of industries and businesses ranging from energy and finance to digital economy and healthcare and the retail and RMG sectors, Biswal said.

“We see growth across all segments of the economy as we create a stronger commercial and trade dialogue with the government,” she added.

The roundtable — which coincides with Bangladesh’s 50th anniversary of independence and the inaugural engagement with prime minister Hasina of the recently launched Council – also featured the launch of the US-Bangladesh Energy Taskforce, co-chaired by Excelerate Energy and General Electric (GE), which will provide recommendations to both governments on the role the private sector can play to strengthen bilateral energy cooperation and development.

The virtual roundtable – supported by Chevron, Excelerate Energy, General Electric, MetLife and Visa – convened high-level Bangladesh government officials as well as major US and Bangladeshi companies across sectors like energy, financial services, manufacturing, food and beverage, aerospace and defense, agriculture, healthcare, water, and supply chain as well as major Bangladeshi business associations.

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