Economics | The Daily Star
  • Why we should rethink financial inclusion

    The good news is that mobile phones and alternate banking channels such as agent banking are bringing millions of individuals into the formal financial system, meaning they have bank accounts or mobile money account for the first time. This is important because financial inclusion is crucial in helping people save money for emergencies, get loans to start businesses, and ultimately resulting in an improvement in their overall wellbeing.

  • Can mounting inequality be stopped?

    Pre-budget discussion for the upcoming fiscal year (2018-19) is going on in the fast track. Even though the Finance Minister will present the budget in parliament after more than a month, business associations are meeting the Chairman of National Board of Revenue (NBR) almost every day.

  • Tap into resources abroad to develop human capital at home

    Three years ago, the then president of Uruguay, José Mujica, travelled to Berlin to meet Chancellor Merkel. She had already been in office for 10 years and was well accustomed to receiving Third World leaders seeking monetary assistance to contribute to the development of their countries. If she thought she was about to meet another such leader, she was in for a surprise.

  • Better managing our agricultural sector

    Sustainable agro supply chain management includes a number of processes such as supply management, production management,

  • We need reliable infrastructure, not megaprojects

    Bangladesh newspapers bring me good news and sometimes not so good ones too. In the latter category, I include accounts of tailbacks, road accidents, power failures, and factory fires.

  • Why is solar power development so slow in Bangladesh?

    The pace at which renewable energy including solar and wind is being developed worldwide suggests that these will overtake the fossil fuels (oil, gas, coal) as dominant sources in power generation in a shorter time frame than previously forecasted. In mid-1990s renowned energy experts predicted that oil, gas and coal will remain the predominant fuel for power generation until 2030.

  • RIP to GDP? Not So Fast

    Recently, David Pilling had a write-up entitled “Do we need to say RIP (Rest in Peace) to GDP?” The write-up draws on his latest book The Growth Delusion on which he recently spoke at the Oxford Literary Festival.

  • Is LDC graduation a panacea?

    Bangladesh has successfully met all three criteria for LDC graduation in the first review in March 2018. It is expected that Bangladesh will be able to meet the graduation criteria in the second review in 2021 and will finally graduate from the LDC status in 2024.

  • How Bangladesh should respond to global apparel industry changes

    I read an interesting article the other day about a cotton spinning company based in Manchester, England. Although the company, by Bangladesh's standards, produces high volumes of product, it has established a niche for itself in the UK and Japan with customers who appreciate both quality and locality of resource.

  • Navigating in an inhospitable global and regional environment

    The global economy is experiencing a multitude of transitions in terms of economic and geopolitical rebalancing, ongoing technological change and emerging social and political risks. These transitions are expected to have far-reaching impacts on Bangladesh's economy, which is becoming increasingly integrated with the global and regional economies.

  • safe water

    How to ensure smooth transition after LDC graduation

    Bangladesh will cross a number of milestones during its implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

  • Mapping out a strategy

    Bangladesh has become eligible for LDC graduation at the triennial review of the Committee for Development Policy (CDP) held in March 2018 by meeting the thresholds for graduation: Gross National Income (GNI) per capita, the Human Assets Index (HAI) and the Economic Vulnerability Index (EVI). Bangladesh has been able to satisfy all the three graduation criteria and that also with significant comfort margins.

  • Learning from peers and graduates

    The outlook for the United Nations' (UN) list of least developed countries (LDCs) is finally looking optimistic after 47 years of lacklustre performance since the category's establishment in 1971. There have been 52 inclusions and only five graduations to date according to the UN Committee for Development Policy's (CDP) triennial reviews. Bangladesh, an LDC, remains on track for graduation.


    What negotiators should keep in mind

    The government of Bangladesh has recently formed a new wage board for the readymade garment (RMG) industry where 4.4 million workers are currently employed. There are around 45 industrial sectors in our country, each with its own set minimum wage. This means that there is no national minimum wage.

  • Clarifying the MIC-LDC confusion

    The national development discourse in Bangladesh often mistakenly considers graduating from the Least Developed Country (LDC) category and becoming a middle-income country (MIC) as interchangeable. Senior-level policymakers continue to express their aspiration for the country to join the middle-income group by 2021, which marks the 50th anniversary of Bangladesh's independence.

  • The elusive development model

    Remarkable growth experience and development of the East Asian countries (South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, and Hong Kong) during the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s led to the emergence of the discourse of “East Asian Development Model.”

  • A look back on the change in world economy during our era

    In the 21st century a much larger proportion of aggregate material progress has taken place in what our generation knew as the developing world. This growth has been multidimensional: income per person; increase in life expectancy, health and literacy; and reduction in the proportion of those who are in extreme poverty and destitution.

  • Closing the gap

    Reduction of gender inequality is a goal embraced by nations across the globe.

  • What's limiting our potential?

    Whenever there is a discussion about trade, investments, exports and economic growth, quite often much focus is placed upon infrastructure as the core challenge of our export growth. But is it the only hurdle?

  • Can we take some pointers?

    The annual budget of the central government of India is immediately preceded by an Economic Survey, designed to provide the background to the budget decisions.

  • The megaproject paradox

    I have been a voracious consumer of news trivia since my Dhaka University days when I was quite a BBC World News addict.

  • Harnessing ocean resources

    The Blue Economy is a new dimension of world economy which combines both aspects of economics and environment based on ocean

  • High tariff's impact on trade

    Bangladesh has made a major transition in its trade policy from a protectionist stance to a freer trade regime since the early 1990s as is reflected by the reduction in the average tariff rate from as high as 105 percent in 1990 to 13 percent in 2016

  • Why the third world should be worried about technological revolution

    2017 was a year of spectacle for technology enthusiasts. Robotics, Big Data, and social media have enjoyed the limelight while Elon Musk, Nick Bostrom and Stephen Hawking have raised concerns about developments in Artificial Intelligence (AI).

  • Paying a high price

    Living costs in Dhaka have soared so high that it's not just low-income groups struggling to make ends meet—the middle class is feeling the squeeze too.

  • Buoyant but not resilient

    With the year 2017 drawing to a close, we are left with both positive and not-so-positive observations from the country's stock market. We all know that after the crash in 2010, the market has been in the doldrums for several years.

  • Bringing multinationals to the stock market

    Bringing multinationals to the stock market is one of those long-standing policy challenges regulators have been grappling with for many years now. On the surface, it appears to be an issue of designing the right incentive structure.

  • Bangladesh's offensive and defensive interests

    The 11th Ministerial Conference of the WTO (WTO MC11) is going to take place in Buenos Aires, Argentina between December 10-13.

  • China's shift to high-tech: Can Bangladesh keep up?

    China remains the undisputed global giant in the textile and apparel industry. Its share of global apparel export is about 37 percent while the share of Bangladesh, the second largest readymade garment exporter in the world, is only about 6 percent.

  • Why tax cuts don't always boost GDP

    At a recent event in Dhaka, Dr Mirza Azizul Islam, the former finance adviser to caretaker government, identified a key dilemma that policymakers often face.