The government has decided to allow locally manufactured motorcycles up to 375cc to run on the country's roads. This information is known from the minutes of a meeting of the Ministry of Interior.
The meeting was held under the chairmanship of Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal on September 7.
The minutes of the meeting have been sent to relevant government authorities including the Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Industry, Directorate of Roads and Highways, Inspector General of Police, Trade and Tariff Commission, Road Transport Authority and Bangladesh Motorcycle Assemblers and Manufacturers Association (BMAMA).
Uttara Motors, the maker of the Bangladeshi market leader Bajaj Motorcycles, is already all set to produce the first batch of the 250cc Pulsar N within 45 days of getting the new model's approval from BRTA. Ifad Motors will start manufacturing Royal Enfield motorcycles at its Chittagong factory from next year.
The decision ended months of speculation. It may be noted that two years ago, the Ministry of Industries started giving permission to set up factories to manufacture 500 cc motorcycles locally.
Following amendments to the Commerce Ministry's import policy, import of raw materials and parts for local production of motorcycles has been increased from the current limit of 165 cc to 500 cc.
However, local production of relatively large investment high cc motorcycles did not commence as road permit approval was not guaranteed until the September 7 meeting.
Matiur Rahman, president of BMAMA and managing director and chairman of Uttara Motors, said, 'We appreciate the approval of the government. This has removed a lot of confusion in attracting more investment in the motorcycle manufacturing industry.'
Companies can now start planning their investments and products,' he added.
Uttara Motors, the maker of the Bangladeshi market leader Bajaj Motorcycles, is already all set to produce the first batch of the 250cc Pulsar N within 45 days of getting the new model's approval from BRTA. The company applied for approval in early June this year.
Ifad Motors will start manufacturing Royal Enfield motorcycles at its Chittagong factory from next year.
Runner Automobiles, one of the top motorcycle manufacturers in the country, has been exporting motorcycles up to 500 cc for several years with the approval of the government.
Other brands are also looking at the possibility of launching high-cc motorcycles.
However, many in the industry feel that it is financially risky to invest in the development of high-cc motorcycles without first checking the market.
Some expressed dismay at the government's retention of some restrictions on motorcycle engine capacity.