Bangladesh becoming an economic powerhouse in South Asia: WSJ
Published: 15:58 5 March 2021 Updated: 19:49 5 March 2021
Bangladesh is becoming an economic powerhouse in South Asia due to the huge increase in exports in the last one decade.
This was stated in a recent report published in the Wall Street Journal (WSJ).
Mike Bird, WSJ’s Hong Kong-based reporter, claims that Bangladesh’s success is similar to the development models of South Korea, China and Vietnam at different stages.
The report says that the export-oriented development country has now set an effective precedent in moving from a low-income country to a middle-income country.
It is said that in the last one decade, Bangladesh’s exports have increased tremendously. As such, the two neighboring countries, India and Pakistan, have lagged far behind in exports.
Last week, Bangladesh achieved an economic milestone, with the United Nations Committee for Development Policy (CDP) recommending Bangladesh’s transition from a Least Developed Country (LDC) to a developing country - which is a great achievement of Bangladesh.
In dollar terms, Bangladesh’s exports have increased by about 80 percent in the last decade. This progress is mainly through the ready-made garment (RMG) sector. However, India and Pakistan’s exports have declined.
As of 2011, Bangladesh’s per capita GDP was 40 percent lower than India’s, however, the country was ahead of India in many ways last year. The collapse is due to the recession in the Indian economy caused by the coronavirus epidemic. According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecast, “this gap will narrow further”.
The report suggests that Bangladesh's economy will be further strengthened by building greater cooperation with Southeast Asia.
Bangladesh needs to build closer multilateral economic cooperation with ASEAN, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) or the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). Eastward cooperation will bring better results.
Citing the examples of Vietnam and Cambodia, it was said that Bangladesh’s next step would be to produce and export high-value export products.
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