International Seminar on Small Enterprise Development Held at AIUB

The American International University, in its pursuit of excellence in education and research and economic development of Bangladesh, organized an International Seminar on "Small Enterprise Development" on July 1, 2006 at the AIUB auditorium. Jointly organized by the AIUB Faculty of Business Administration and AIUB Center for Research and Excellence (ACRE) and partly sponsored by ACI Bangladesh limited, the seminar drew international scholars from Thailand and Sweden who presented papers on small enterprise models and experiences. The seminar was inaugurated by Mr. Ehsanul Haque, M.P., Honorable State Minister for Education, Government of Bangladesh. The minister in his speech emphasized the role of SMEs in the development of Bangladesh. Referring to Thailand, the minister urged all concern to come forward in reducing the unemployment issues by involving more into SMEs and help elevate the economic status of the country. The role of educational institutions is crucial, the minister urged. The inaugural session was followed by a business session where three papers on Small Enterprises (SEs) were presented by scholars from home and abroad. Prof. Sakit and Prof. Kuntabur of Royal Institute of Technology in Thailand presented a paper on experience and issues related to the SMEs in the context of Thailand, Prof. Akmal of University of Gavle and Dr. Khan of AIUB jointly presented a paper on matrix of Small Enterprise Development for developing countries and Prof. Anwar Hossain and Dr. Islam of AIUB presented a paper on technology use in agribusiness sector SEs in Bangladesh. Professor Abu Ahmed, Chairman of Bangladesh Shilpa Bank chaired the business session while Mr. Sayeeful Islam, the Ex-President of DCCI delivered his insight as a designated discussant. A mix of academia, policy planners, financial institutions, donor agencies, NGOs, private sector and relevant others attended the seminar. Interesting discussion followed the presentation and the role of SEs was underscored by all participants. The seminar highlighted the issue that SMEs contribute to almost 80% of the GDP of the developed countries like USA and Japan. The seminar speakers pointed out that Bangladesh should take lessons from the experiences of Thailand and China in order for its SEs to be more effective in removing the unemployment and help in the development of the country. Dr. Anwarul Abedin, the Honorable Chairman of AIUB, Dr. Carmen Z. Lamagna, the Honorable Vice Chancellor of the university were present in the seminar and spoke on the occasion. The Pro-Vice Chancellor of AIUB Prof. Dr. Tafazzal Hossaindelivered the vote of thanks.