Country Risk

Reported involvement of Bangladesh military in metro project indicates expanding military business interests in major construction projects

09 November 2017


On 3 November, Bangladeshi financial newspaper The Financial Express reported that the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) had approved a joint proposal with the military to construct a metro system project in Dhaka.

The report suggests that the military’s engineering arm, the Special Works Organisation (SWO), submitted the proposal with a local Bangladeshi firm to develop the capital’s Mass Rapid Transit Line-2 (MRT-2), one of six metro lines planned by the Dhaka government by 2035. Although unconfirmed, the report of the SWO’s potential involvement in the MRT-2 project underlines the military’s growing business interests in Bangladesh. Although the SWO has become increasingly involved in infrastructure construction projects during the past three years – including as a consulting supervisor and contractor on the Padma bridge project – the organisation has no previous experience in developing metro systems.

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