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Bangladesh - World wide - December 31, 2023

‘Expats are lighthouses’

Mahfuz Emran: After the corona epidemic, the Ukraine-Russia war hit the economy. The economy turned upside down due to the dollar crisis. Remittances sent by expatriates are a sign of relief when everyone wonders what will happen in the coming days. During the pandemic, expatriates made the biggest contribution to keep the wheels of the economy moving. Expatriates are the first to come forward to solve the new economic crisis caused by the Russia-Ukraine war. From 2009 to 2022, expatriate siblings sent an average of $1,750 million in remittances per year. In the financial year 2022-23, its amount was $2,161 million.
Despite this, Bangladesh is still lagging behind other countries to ease the suffering of these expatriate remittance fighters. A man goes abroad leaving behind his parents, brothers and sisters, wife and children and relatives. But his mind is on the land of the country. He remembers his parents, brothers and sisters, wife and children. National Diaspora Day is being celebrated for the first time today on December 30 to commemorate the important contribution of expatriate Bangladeshis in the socio-economic development of the country. This year’s theme of the day is ‘Welfare of Expatriates, Dignity – Our Commitment; They are also equal partners in building Smart Bangladesh.
Government and private organizations have taken various programs to celebrate the day. In a message given on the occasion of “National Expatriate Day”, President Sahabuddin said that the government has given special importance to the involvement of expatriates in national development. Bangladesh embassies abroad and diaspora organizations will increase the country’s status by presenting the success story of Bangladesh to the world through the celebration of ‘National Diaspora Day’ – this is the hope of all.
Referring to the various measures taken by the government for expatriates, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said, with the aim of recognizing the contribution of expatriate Bangladeshis in national development and also to involve them more in the development activities of the country, December 30 has been declared as ‘National Expatriate Day’ from this year. Prabasi Kalyan Bank was established in 2010 for the overall welfare of expatriate and expatriate workers.
Support is being provided in various sectors, including construction of buildings for the children of expatriates in the United Arab Emirates, Greece, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia in running schools according to the Bangladeshi curriculum. Apart from this, since 2018, our government has been awarding Commercially Important Person (CIP) awards to non-resident Bangladeshis every year in recognition of their significant contribution to the country’s economy through remittances, investment in industries and import of domestic products.
According to the census report of the Bureau of Statistics, there are now 50.53 lakh Bangladeshi citizens living in different countries of the world. Most people have gone from Chittagong division. And the least number of people went to Rangpur division. According to the Census and Household Census 2022 report, most citizens of Chittagong Division are staying abroad. Their number is 20 lakh 51 thousand 952 people, second position is 14 lakh 31 thousand 131 people of Dhaka division, third position is 5 lakh 73 thousand 185 people of Sylhet division, fourth position is Khulna division 3 lakh 6 thousand 700 people, fifth position is Rajshahi division 2 lakh 69 thousand 204 people, Mymensingh division is in the sixth position with 1 lakh 54 thousand 227 people and the least number of Bangladeshis staying abroad is Rangpur division with only 1 lakh 15 thousand 431 people.
According to the report, 4 lakh 66 thousand 666 people have returned to the country from abroad in the last two years. Chittagong division number 1 lakh 54 thousand is first in the list of returnees. In terms of returns, Dhaka Division is in the second position with 1 lakh 32 thousand 886 people and Khulna Division is in the third position with 39 thousand 288 people.
Jagannath University’s former vice-chancellor Dr. Mizanur Rahman said that the contribution of expatriate brothers and sisters to keep the country’s economic wheels running is undeniable. The demand for a day to commemorate the contribution of remittance fighters in gratitude has been long-standing.
He believes that various necessary steps can be taken to eliminate the problems of expatriates and improve the quality of life by observing the day.

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