Ongoing Research: Study on Inclusive Business Model to Encourage Investment in CMSMEs in Bangladesh

It is widely accepted that the growth of CMSMEs in Bangladesh has a multiplier effect on the national economy, specifically on employment, GDP growth, and poverty reduction. These enterprises generate more direct jobs per unit of investment than do large enterprises. They serve as training grounds for developing technical and entrepreneurial skills and, by virtue of their greater use of indigenous technological capabilities, they promote local inter-sectoral linkages (particularly with agriculture) and contribute to dynamism and competitiveness of the economy.

The objective of this study is to explore and suggest inclusive business models (IBMs) to encourage investments in CMSMEs in Bangladesh. The study has been initiated by the General Economics Division (GED) of the Bangladesh Planning Commission with support from UNDP. The study will explore and fulfill some key objectives, such as, understand the importance of CMSMEs for broad-based job creation and sustained economic growth along with poverty reduction in Bangladesh; assess the impact of ongoing Covid-19 pandemic on CMSMEs in Bangladesh;  evaluate the current investment scenario and financing barriers (e.g., access to finance) for the CMSMEs;  analyse how digital adoption can be beneficial for the CMSMEs; and design an IBM considering the gender issues for strengthening investments in CMSMEs in Bangladesh.

Within the above objectives, the study intends to explore the current investment scenario and financing barriers for the CMSMEs and design the IBM as a recovery pathway covering longer term objectives. The study will also analyse important dimensions of CMSMEs in Bangladesh; its nexus with achieving the SDGs; and identify the link between investment in CMSMEs, employment, economic growth, and poverty eradication. The study will also evaluate the impact of Covid-19 pandemic on CMSMEs in Bangladesh, analyse the CMSMEs considering gender issues and digital adoption by CMSMEs–all of which can contribute to green recovery of CMSMEs from Covid-19 and ensure future growth in a sustainable manner.