Investment and Business Opportunities in Bangladesh

Bangladesh offers an abundant supply of disciplined, easily trainable and low-cost work force suitable for any labor-intensive industry. Of late, there is an increasing supply of professionals, technologists and other middle and low level skilled workers. They receive technical training from universities, college, technical training centers, polytechnic institutions etc. The expenditure incurred by an employer to train his employee is exempted from income tax.

Employment Conditions

The minimum age for workers in Bangladesh is 16 years in factories and establishments. Contracts are made in the form of a letter of offer. Workers may also be engaged on verbal agreements. In government organizations and in some private organizations as well, a probationary period exists for skilled or semi-skilled workers varying between three month's to one year. During this period either party may serve one month's notice for termination from or giving up to the job. In the private sector, the dignity of labor is ensured in accordance with the principles enunciated in the International Labour Organization (ILO) convention and recommendations.

Employment Status (in million)

Labor force characteristics MES 2009 (m)* LFS 2005-06 (m)*
Economically active population (15 years+) 53.7 49.5
Employed population 51.0 47.4
Male 38.5 36.1
Female 12.5 11.3
Self employed/own account workers 20.0 19.9
Employer 0.2 0.1
Employee 8.7 6.6
Unpaid family helper 10.8 10.3
Day laborers 10.3 8.6
Others 0.9 1.9

*MES = Monitoring on Employment Survey
LFS = Labour Force Survey
m = million

Source: Report on monitoring and employment survey-2009, Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics

Labor Force

According to the survey Report on monitoring and employment survey-2009, the labor force increased from 49.5m in 2006 to 53.7m in 2009. The growth rate has been 2.7% a year. 62.7% of the population are of age 15 years and over and out of them 59.3% are economically active and 40.7% are economically not active.

Labor Force 2009-10, by sector, %
Source: Bangladesh Economic Review-2010 (Bangla version), Ministry of Finance

Labor Laws

In Bangladesh the following major labor laws are now in operation:

  • Labor Acts 2006
  • Private Road Transport Labor Welfare Fund Law 2005
  • Labor Welfare Foundation Law Law 2006
  • Minimum Wages Board Laws

The main labor policies are:

  • Child Labor Policy
  • Domestic Worker Protection and Welfare Policy 2010

Note: For more detailed please visit Ministry of Labour and Employment, GOB

Step By Step Procedure for Investment in Bangladesh

Trade Bodies of Bangladesh

Chambers of Commerce

Foreign Trade Bodies in Bangladesh

Foreign Investment

Board of Investment (BOI)

Export Processing Zones (EPZs)

Incentives & Facilities

Year-wise Investment in EPZ

Overview of EPZ

FDI Magazine's rankings

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