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Bangladesh - 3 weeks ago

Smooth passage to a developing country a challenge for BD

Says Dr Iftekhar Ahmed Chowdhury

Special Correspondent: Former Foreign Adviser to the Caretaker government Dr Iftekhar Ahmed Chowdhury yesterday said that the immediate challenge for Bangladesh is for a smooth passage to a developing country status as it exists the list of LDSc.
“This graduation can be both a boon and a bane. It is a boon because it is an acknowledgment of

progress. It would improve Bangladesh’s image which would give it better credit ratings. This would allow it to borrow more cheaply on the global market. It is a bane because it would ultimately lose all the preferences accorded to LDCs in global trade such as under the European Union’s “Everything but Arms” initiatives,” he said.

“Skillful and nimble diplomacy would be needed to secure the GSP Plus facilities, though that would be the tip of the iceberg,” he observed while speaking at the installation of newly elected executive committee of Global Economist Forum (GEF), Bangladesh Chapter, distribution of UN accreditation cards and handing over GEF Performance Award ceremony as the chief guest.
Global Economist Forum organized the function at CIRDAP auditorium in collaboration with the Daily Industry and Community Bank with GEF central president and Editor of the Daily Industry Dr Enayet Karim in the chair.
Former Director General of Indian Army Dr. Dilawar Singh and High Commissioner of Brunei Darussalam Haji Haris bin Haji Othman were present at the function as the special guests.
Dr Iftekhar Ahmed Chowdhury said the main challenge would lie in tackling the fundamentals beneath. For instance, in addressing domestically the 27 or so prerequisites, including combating corruption, non-compliance in the garment sector, governance in the banking regulations, and other inadequacies.
He said comparative advantages would need to be transformed into competitive advantages.
Low wages tend to perpetuate poverty: hence, wage rise would need to be calibrated with the increase in productivity. The economy should diversify, particularly in the services, which do not face goods tariff and hence less affected by loss of preferences, he added.
Haji Haris bin Haji Othman said Bangladesh’s economic achievements are undeniably impressive, marked by significant improvements in key indicators such as life expectancy, poverty reduction, and economic growth.
He however said that underlying vulnerabilities pose challenge to sustaining this progress and achieving long-term prosperity.
Dr Enayet Karim detailed about GEF plan to release $100 billion Bangladesh Development Mega Bond by 2025.
He introduced the office bearers of the newly elected executive committee of GEF Bangladesh Chapter and the guests distributed UN Accreditation cards among them.
Later, Bangladesh’s four best banks, one insurance company two individuals were presented GEF Performance Award 2024.
Of them, Community Bank PLC was awarded GEF performance Award as strongest bank in Bangladesh while Pubali Bank PLC as best conventional bank, Shahjalal Islami Bank PLC as strongest bank and Exim Bank Limited as best Sariah bank.
Besides, Trust Islami Life Insurance was given performance award as best insurance company while Prof Dr Anwarul Karim as folklore friend of Bangladesh and Dr Md Nazibur Rahman, ndc as a model police officer.
It may be mentioned that GEF Bangladesh Chapter has been formed with Mashihul Huq Chowdhury, Managing Director of Community Bank as its president and Md Gias Uddin, Managing Director of Trust Islami Life Insurance as general secretary.

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