The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (Ecnec) has approved a Tk20,402.75-crore budget to implement 13 projects, more than 50% of which will be financed by donations.
One of the projects is the construction of 560 model mosques and Islamic cultural centres around Bangladesh, which is estimated to cost around Tk9,062.41 crore.
The budget was approved at an Ecnec meeting on Tuesday, with Ecnec Chairperson and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in chair.
Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal said Tk10,730 crore of the budget would come as project assistance.
Of the Tk9,062.41-crore budget for the the mosque and Islamic centre development project, Tk8,169.79 crore will be covered by donations, including a grant from Saudi Arabia.
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The decision to construct model mosques across the country was made on the back of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's visit to Saudi Arabia last year.
This is the most expensive mosque establishment project in the country's history.
The Ecnec has also approved a Tk350-crore budget to construct three wholesale kitchen markets in Dhaka city and a Tk675-crore project to expand the 3G network of state-owned mobile phone operator Teletalk, the planning minister said.
The other high-cost projects are: construction of 400kV substation in Gopalganj and a 400kV power transmission line between Gopalganj and Patuakhali worth Tk3,294.24 crore, establishment of IT parks in 12 districts worth Tk1,796.4 crore, construction of road along the Karnaphuli River worth Tk1.978.88 crore, and installation of a gas transmission pipeline between Maheshkhali, Cox's Bazar and Anwara, Chittagong worth Tk1,109.23 crore.
The rest of the projects are: highway renovation in Mymensingh worth Tk798.15 crore, construction of Thanchi-Remakri-Modok-Likri road in Bandarban worth Tk469.53 crore, construction of marine drive in Cox's Bazar worth Tk469.53 crore, upgrading a road to a four-lane highway in Sylhet at the cost of Tk455.82 crore, renovation of Khalishpur-Maheshpur-Duttanagar-Jinnahnagar-Jadabpur highway worth Tk78.4 crore and construction of Sunamganj Textile Institute at the cost of Tk97.22 crore.