National Symposium on Private Sector Participation in Disaster Risk Management-Towards Smart Bangladesh

Dhaka Chamber is currently executing the "Strengthening Urban Public-Private Programming for Earthquake Resilience (SUPER)" project, which targets an expert audience. This consortium initiative, led by ActionAid and comprising organizations such as the Dhaka Chamber, World Vision, and United Purpose, is generously funded by the European Civil Protection & Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO). The project's overarching aim is to enhance the Nation's Disaster management capabilities, foster improved coordination, and ultimately strengthen Earthquake Disaster Risk Management (EQDRM) within urban communities.

In this regard, Dhaka Chamber of Commerce & Industry organized a National Symposium titled “Private Sector Participation in Disaster Risk Management-Towards Smart Bangladesh” on Saturday, June 24, 2023 at Radisson Blu Dhaka Water Garden.

Barrister Md. Sameer Sattar, President, DCCI moderated the opening session after delivering his welcome remarks. Barrister Sheikh Fazle Noor Taposh, Mayor, Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) and Mr. Md. Atiqul Islam, Mayor, Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) joined virtually through ZOOM to grace the occasion as the special guests. Mr. Lokman Hossain Miah, Executive Chairman, BIDA and Mr. Jasim Uddin, President, FBCCI were present as Guests of Honor. Mr. Md. Mijanur Rahman, Director General (Additional Secretary), Department of Disaster Management was the special speaker at the event.


  • • We need to implement comprehensive disaster risk mitigation strategies and recovery measures through collaboration with various stakeholders such as Government institutions, NGOs and the private sector.
  • • UNDP launched an initiative in 2022 to address the challenge of building resilience through disaster risk finance and insurance in LDCs and V20 climate-vulnerable countries. Bangladesh may replicate these learning and experiences to safeguard the private sector.
  • • Private sector can play an important role in disaster risk reduction not only by entering into private public partnerships but also by reforming their business models to include disaster management policies.
  • • Dhaka city especially old town may be considered the most vulnerable in Disaster risk prone. So, Prevention is better than cure. That’s why, we have to develop a coordination mechanism with all stakeholders to address Disaster issues.
  • • We need more initiatives from private sector actors in our country. Moreover, encouraging the public-private partnership like government agencies, FBCCI, DCCI, our two city corporations along with other stakeholders in disaster risk reduction and in devising a comprehensive disaster management system.
  • • We have to maintain compliance in our industry for disaster risk management.
  • • Need to develop a Master Plan to address the issues of Disaster Risk to coordinate with all stakeholders.
  • • We have the highest number of green factories in RMG sector. Similarly, we need to make resilient and competent the other sectors.
  • • We need to secure our staff and workers and ensure compliance issues for securing our export-oriented industries and private sector as well.
  • • Bangladesh would also face some major negative impact due to climate change caused by global warming. The country needs to be adequately prepared to withstand this changing pattern of disasters by bringing in best disaster management practices.
  • • We need to provide civic education for the masses regarding the role and responsibilities during and after any disaster.
  • • We need to organize fire drill programs on regular basis to train the staffs in every major office.
  • • We need to revive every canal of the city to keep the normal flow of water in the city based on CIS map.
  • • Bangladesh Bank needs to create a fund from which the private sector can take loan at subsidized rate to face the financial challenges of disasters.
  • • We need a comprehensive disaster risk reduction plan including preparedness, mitigation, response, and recovery measures through the collaboration of several stakeholders including government, NGOs, business sector and foreign partners.
  • • Government needs to strengthen the insurance market and increase its coverage to minimize the impact of disaster-related losses on the country’s economy.
  • • Country’s capital market needs to develop disaster risk financing instruments such as catastrophe bond which has already become a renowned instrument in the global financial market.
  • • To build a resilient nation, the government needs to expedite the implementation of the Sendai Framework (2015-2030), a widely acclaimed inclusive framework for disaster risk reduction.
  • • We need to ensure disaster-friendly infrastructure in both urban and rural areas and to increase investment in the private sector to reduce the risk of businesses.
  • • Bangladesh Bank can offer for the private sector smart “pre-arranged” disaster risk financing solutions and proactive planning to minimize economic impacts of catastrophes.
  • • Organizations investing in disaster risk management need to be facilitated with tax incentives and equipped with cutting-edge technology.
  • • A comprehensive financing policy needs to be formulated in partnership with the private sector to ensure post-disaster recovery and rehabilitation, especially for SMEs.
  • • Disaster Risk Management Financing Taxonomy and Disaster Risk Management Financing Strategy need to be incorporated and addressed in the existing Sustainable Finance policy of Bangladesh Bank.
  • • Need NBR Facilitations/Incentives for Promoting Disaster Risk Mitigating Factors/Tools.
  • • Existing Policy on Green Bond Financing for Banks and FIs needs review to make it operational for the deserving banks/FIs to play the required role at pace that it demands.
  • • Proper Survey needs to be conducted to assess demand gap for Disaster Management Financing.
  • • Proper evaluation before fund allocation and stricter monitoring there after fund distribution must be maintained for ensuring the effective utilization of resources.
  • • Required concentration and contribution while in procuring and managing all funds w.r.t complying with International and National standard and norms.
  • • Required a structured database of all the key players and deals in the financial and capital market under an effective national information cell/network/hub needs to be established for an environment-friendly Disaster Risk Management Financing Mechanism under Disaster Risk Management Financing Strategy.
  • • Policies not implementable for Disaster Risk Management Financing Products, need to be revisited.
  • • Cooperation, Coordination, and Collaboration among all concerned national & global stakes need to be ensured.
  • • We need to bring changes in the banking policy by offering specific DRF instruments based on the need of the districts which are prone to specific kind of disasters.
  • • We need to introduce insurance in Agriculture sector forming an Insurance Company by Govt. initiative.
  • • Passengers of Coastal areas need to be covered with insurance while they travel. Insurance premium can be introduced with the ticket.
  • • Joint committee needs to be formed in cooperation with the insurance association, MoF, ICT division, and other stakeholders to create a congenial insurance ecosystem for DRF in Bangladesh.
  • • There are many issues related to DRM can be financed through Green Bond. For this, we need to build an efficient ecosystem for offering green bond through the capital market of Bangladesh.
  • • Offering Green bond through Capital market is possible because there is idle money at the hand of general people who are searching an option for risk free investment.
  • • Some disasters which directly impact the poor and vulnerable community cannot be financed through project financing, they need to be supported by public finance.
  • • We need to launch low-cost refinancing schemes for the private sector so that they can withstand the negative impact of disasters and continue their business operations.
  • • We need to work together for the sustainability of the projects related to DRM.
  • • To respond to the situation comprehensively, policymakers and market participants must realise the necessity of having a healthy ecosystem as a natural line of defence and collective efforts need to address the issues of disaster risk and preparedness.
  • • To incentivize the businesses who have taken the initiative in the industry like green banking interventions, environmental risk management initiatives, and corporate social responsibility ventures.
  • • Disaster risk mitigation needs to take precautionary measures through providing sustainable finance.
  • • The standard of financial disclosures in our country remains very low. Even some listed companies in Bangladesh do not meet the minimum corporate governance and financial reporting standards. Such companies need to enhance their governance standards or get delisted from the public market.
  • • To help businesses advance towards a sustainable economy by providing sustainability-linked loans based on integration of ESG criteria, to support SDGs and to combat climate change.
  • • Institutional investors in our country should adhere to ESG principles in their investment decisions. The regulators may also consider imposing ESG guidelines on institutional investors.
  • • Private Sector Participation in Disaster Risk Management is very crucial for changing the disaster risk management landscape of our country through innovative financial strategy.
  • • Bangladesh needs a Systematic financial protection in the disaster risk management practice. Considering this dire state of DRF in the country, there is an urgent need to develop ex-ante and ex-post disaster risk financial solutions to minimize the economic impacts of these disasters.
  • • It is high time the financial institutions in both the public and the private sector needed to come forward with innovative product offerings that will strengthen Disaster risk financing in the country.
  • • Disaster management is no longer a public good, private sector participation is very crucial now. We need PPP for DRM in Bangladesh.
  • • Capital market in Bangladesh can also bring into new capital markets instruments such as catastrophe bonds and swaps which have become important instruments in the global re-insurance market.
  • • A tailored list of financial services needs to be developed according to the nature of the disasters that occur in Bangladesh and considering their financial impact on our economy.
  • • To reshape the landscape of DRF in the country, the feasibility of issuing catastrophe bonds and PPP-based financial solutions needs to be assessed following the footstep of developed nations.
  • • We need to create a Taskforce involving regulatory bodies, relevant ministries and private sector bodies to create Action plan that will be implemented for DRM and DRF.
  • • DCCI can take pioneering role to enhance the capacity of other chambers for real-time disaster management nationwide.
  • • Urban areas need special attention for DRF.
  • • Bangladesh must prioritize effective disaster management facilitated by technology, enabling easier and faster prevention, planning, and response efforts.
  • • Technology can serve as the vital tool in disaster management by enabling prediction, monitoring and response strategy and mitigating its impact.
  • • We need to form a system and protocol to mitigate the disasters in Bangladesh.
  • • We need to pay attention on the difference between the lab-based experiment and real-world experiment.
  • • Fire safety measures adopted in Bangladesh can be used for blockchain implementation.
  • • Chambers can work on awareness building using technologies.
  • • Different technologies should be used in different types of disasters. Our local technologies should be collaborated with other foreign technologies.
  • • Need community-based hydrants and community should be involved in this regard.
  • • Robotics, AI, etc. can be used for disaster risk management.

Published on: 2023-06-24

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