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NEWS & EVENTS
28 March 2021

SC4SDG project in collaboration with General Economics Division (GED) of Bangladesh Planning Commission is organizing a national dialogue on “Sustainable Blue Economy in Bangladesh through Sustainable Bond” on 28 March 2021 (10.00 am - 01.00 pm) at the Media Bazar Hall, Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC), Agargaon, Dhaka.

This wider stakeholders’ dialogue is arranged to take feedback on the recently conducted study on “Assessing the Feasibility of Instituting Blue Bond in the Bond Market in Bangladesh”, by GED and SC4SDG project. This is the first attempt in Bangladesh for assessing the feasibility of promoting blue bond in the bond market. It is believed that all stakeholders’ feedback on the findings of this study will be invaluable for floating blue bond and raising investment fund to promote the blue economy in Bangladesh.

The national dialogue aspires to sensitize the relevant stakeholders representing different ministries/divisions, private sector organizations, international financial institutions, development partners, NGOs, think-tanks, universities, etc. about sustainable financing instruments, especially blue bond. Besides, it aims to discuss the opportunities, challenges, and required policy actions to initiate the blue bond in the bond market of Bangladesh for sustainable financing.

Dr. Shamsul Alam, Member (Senior Secretary), General Economics Division has given his consent to grace the event as Chief Guest. Mr. Ashadul Islam, Senior Secretary, Financial Institutions Division, Rear Admiral (Retd.) Mr. Md. Khurshed Alam, Secretary, Maritime Affairs Unit, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Professor Shibli Rubayat-Ul-Islam, Chairman, Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission will attend the session as Special Guests. Ms. Nguyen Thi Ngoc Van, Deputy Resident Representative, UNDP Bangladesh will be present in the event as Guest of Honor.

The dialogue will also be attended by the Colleagues from Asian Development Bank - Dr. Melissa Walsh, Ocean Finance Manager, Sustainable Development and Climate Change Department, Mr. Kosintr Puongsophol, Financial Sector Specialist, Economic Research and Regional Cooperation Department and Mr. Thomas Kessler, Principal Finance and Insurance Specialist, Sustainable Development and Climate Change Department. They will give an online presentation titled “Supporting the Establishment of a Blue Economy in Bangladesh”.

As part of PEA Knowledge sharing #3/2021, you are kindly invited to join the event at

Below are the concept note of the event and programme agenda. Please kindly share the Zoom link with the other colleagues who may be interested in joining the dialogue.

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Concept Note.pdf (175.14 KB)
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Summary Note

The ‘Strengthening Institutional Capacity for SDGs Achievement in Bangladesh (SC4SDG)’ project of UNDP Bangladesh and UNEP-PEA4SDGs organized a high-profile national dialogue between public and private sectors on “Sustainable Blue Economy in Bangladesh through Sustainable Blue Bond” on 28 March 2021. The event was organized jointly with the General Economics Division (GED) of Bangladesh Planning Commission. Under the discourse on adopting innovative financing strategies for sustainable development, the dialogue brought blue bond – a sustainable financing instrument - into the discussion table intending to ensure inclusive development in Bangladesh through promotion of a sustainable blue economy.

The national dialogue was graced by the presence of dignitaries from different government and non-government agencies. Dr. Shamsul Alam, Member (Senior Secretary), General Economics Division was the Chief Guest of the event. Mr. Ashadul Islam, Senior Secretary, Financial Institutions Division, Rear Admiral (Retd.) Mr. Md. Khurshed Alam, Secretary, Maritime Affairs Unit, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Professor Shibli Rubayat-Ul-Islam, Chairman, Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission attended the session as Special Guests. Ms. Nguyen Thi Ngoc Van, Deputy Resident Representative, UNDP Bangladesh was present at the event as Guest of Honour.

Around 70 participants from different ministries/divisions, private sector organizations, international financial institutions, development partners, think-tanks, and universities attended this important dialogue. Aside physical presence some 25 participants joined the conversation virtually. The dialogue briefed attendees about the blue economy, sustainable and innovative financing strategies, and sustainable bonds for sustainable financing, especially blue bond. Besides, it discussed the opportunities, challenges, and required policy actions to initiate the blue bond in the bond market of Bangladesh to finance the blue projects. Bangladesh has recently undertaken a study on ‘Assessing the Feasibility of Instituting Blue Bond in the Bond Market in Bangladesh’. The aim of the study – first of this kind in Bangladesh – is to encourage investment in blue economy. Nonetheless, the key findings and recommendations of this study financed by the SC4SDG project were presented at the national dialogue by the General Economics Division (GED), where the project is anchored. Experts from Asian Development Bank also joined the programme virtually and gave a presentation on “Supporting the Establishment of a Blue Economy in Bangladesh”.

During the discussion, some important aspects of the current bond market as well as blue economy were brought up and consequently, few suggestions were made to promote Blue Bond in Bangladesh. It was informed in the dialogue that the bond market in Bangladesh is taking a shape and has the appetite for absorbing new types of bonds. The discussants pointed out that there are opportunities and demands for blue bonds from investors in Bangladesh. A recent example is the introduction of Sukuk bond in the country which has been over-subscribed. The distinguished participants also highlighted that, in Bangladesh, the blue economy has an enormous prospect. They also added that the lack of consciousness and expertise in this area needs to be addressed to explore the full potential of blue economy in the country and it is urgent to develop strong pipeline of bankable projects. The participants including the government stakeholders agreed that Bangladesh will require to emphasize on investigating new innovative financing strategies in order to engage the private sector in financing the SDGs. In this regard, they approved that blue bond can be an innovative tool to finance the public investment in projects related to ocean and marine that will ultimately contribute to environmental sustainability, employment generation, poverty eradication, and equality in Bangladesh. It was reiterated that blue bond is a fresh concept and thus, more discussion is required to sensitize the relevant stakeholders. The dialogue concluded that strong collaboration among key agencies of the Government is vital to move this initiative forward. The meeting concluded with the optimistic notes that the relevant bodies will carry forward this discourse on blue bond and that will help in accelerating the process of introducing blue bond in the bond market of Bangladesh.

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