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CHAPTER ONE

“INTRODUCTION”

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BANGLADESH A SHORT PROFILE

INTRODUCTION:

Background: Europeans began to set up trading posts in the area of Bangladesh in the
16th century; eventually the British came to dominate the region and it became part of
British India. In 1947, West Pakistan and East Bengal (both primarily Muslim) separated
from India (largely Hindu) and jointly became the new country of Pakistan. East Bengal
became East Pakistan in 1955, but the awkward arrangement of a two-part country with
its territorial units separated by 1,600 km left the Bengalis marginalized and dissatisfied.
East Pakistan seceded from its union with West Pakistan in 1971 and was renamed
Bangladesh. A military-backed caretaker regime suspended planned parliamentary
elections in January 2007 in an effort to reform the political system and root out
corruption; the regime has pledged new democratic elections by the end of 2008. About a
third of this extremely poor country floods annually during the monsoon rainy season,
hampering economic development.

GEOGRAPHY:

Location: Southern Asia, bordering the Bay of Bengal, between


Burma and India

Geographic Coordinates: 24 00 N, 90 00 E

Map References: Asia

Area: Total: 144,000 sq km


Land: 133,910 sq km
Water: 10,090 sq km

Area - Comparative: Slightly smaller than Iowa

Land Boundaries: Total: 4,246 km


Border Countries: Burma 193 km, India 4,053 km

Coastline: 580 km

Maritime Claims: Territorial sea: 12 nm


Contiguous zone: 18 nm
Exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Continental shelf: up to the outer limits of the continental
margin

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Climate: Tropical; mild winter (October to March); hot, humid
summer (March to June); humid, warm rainy monsoon
(June to October)

Terrain: Mostly flat alluvial plain; hilly in southeast


Elevation Extremes: Lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m
Highest point: Keokradong 1,230 m

Natural Resources: Natural Gas, Arable land, Timber, Coal

Land Use: Arable land: 55.39%


Permanent crops: 3.08%
Other: 41.53% (2005)

Irrigated Land: 47,250 sq km (2003)

Total Renewable Water Resources:


1,210.6 cu km (1999)

Freshwater Withdrawal (Domestic/Industrial/Agricultural):


Total: 79.4 cu km/yr (3%/1%/96%)
Per capita: 560 cu m/yr (2000)

Natural hazards: Droughts, cyclones; much of the country routinely


inundated during the summer monsoon season

Environment –Current Issues:


Many people are landless and forced to live on and
cultivate flood-prone land; waterborne diseases prevalent in
surface water; water pollution, especially of fishing areas,
results from the use of commercial pesticides; ground water
contaminated by naturally occurring arsenic; intermittent
water shortages because of falling water tables in the
northern and central parts of the country; soil degradation
and erosion; deforestation; severe overpopulation

Environment –International Agreements:


Party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-
Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species,
Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of
the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - Note: Most of the country is situated on deltas of large rivers


flowing from the Himalayas: the Ganges unites with the

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Jamuna (main channel of the Brahmaputra) and later joins
the Meghna to eventually empty into the Bay of Bengal

PEOPLE:

Population: Definition Field Listing Rank Order 153,546,896 (July


2008 est.)

Age Structure: 0-14 years: 33.4% (male 26,364,370/female 24,859,792)


15-64 years: 63.1% (male 49,412,903/female 47,468,013)
65 years and over: 3.5% (male 2,912,321/female
2,529,502) (2008 est.)

Median Age: Total: 22.8 years


Male: 22.8 years
Female: 22.9 years (2008 est.)

Population Growth Rate: 2.022% (2008 est.)

Birth Rate: 28.86 births/1,000 population (2008 est.)

Death Rate: 8 deaths/1,000 population (2008 est.)

Net Migration Rate: -0.65 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2008 est.)

Sex Ratio: At birth: 1.06 male(s)/female


Under 15 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 1.15 male(s)/female
Total population: 1.05 male(s)/female (2008 est.)

Infant Mortality Rate: Total: 57.45 deaths/1,000 live births


Male: 58.44 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 56.41 deaths/1,000 live births (2008 est.)

Life Expectancy at Birth: Total population: 63.21 years


Male: 63.14 years
Female: 63.28 years (2008 est.)

Total Fertility Rate: 3.08 children born/woman (2008 est.)

HIV/AIDS –Adult Prevalence Rate:


Less than 0.1% (2001 est.)

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HIV/AIDS -People Living With HIV/AIDS:
13,000 (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - Deaths: 650 (2001 est.)

Major Infectious Diseases: Degree of risk: high


Food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal
diarrhea, hepatitis A and E, and typhoid fever
Vectorborne Diseases: dengue fever and malaria are high
risks in some locations
Water contact disease: leptospirosis
Animal contact disease: rabies
Note: highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza has been
identified in this country; it poses a negligible risk with
extremely rare cases possible among US citizens who have
close contact with birds (2008)

Nationality: Noun: Bangladeshi(s)


Adjective: Bangladeshi

Ethnic Groups: Bengali 98%, other 2% (includes tribal groups, non-


Bengali Muslims) (1998)

Religions: Muslim 83%, Hindu 16%, other 1% (1998)

Languages: Bangla (official, also known as Bengali), English

Literacy: Definition: age 15 and over can read and write


Total population: 43.1%
Male: 53.9%
Female: 31.8% (2003 est.)

School Life Expectancy (Primary To Tertiary Education):


Total: 8 years
Male: 8 years
Female: 8 years (2004)

Education Expenditures: 2.7% of GDP (2005)

GOVERNMENT:

Country Name: Conventional long form: People's Republic of Bangladesh


Conventional short form: Bangladesh
Local long form: Gana Prajatantri Banladesh
Former: East Bengal, East Pakistan

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Government Type: Parliamentary Democracy

Capital: Name: Dhaka


Geographic Coordinates: 23 43 N, 90 24 E
Time Difference: UTC+6 (11 hours ahead of Washington,
DC during Standard Time)

Administrative Divisions: 6 Divisions; Barisal, Chittagong, Dhaka, Khulna, Rajshahi,


Sylhet

Independence: 16 December 1971 (from West Pakistan); note - 26 March


1971 is the date of independence from West Pakistan, 16
December 1971 is known as Victory Day and
commemorates the official creation of the state of
Bangladesh

National Holiday: Independence Day, 26 March (1971); note - 26 March 1971


is the date of independence from West Pakistan, 16
December 1971 is Victory Day and commemorates the
official creation of the state of Bangladesh

Constitution: 4 November 1972, effective 16 December 1972; suspended


following coup of 24 March 1982, restored 10 November
1986; amended many times

Legal System: Based on English common law; has not accepted


compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage: 18 years of age; Universal

Executive Branch: Chief of State: President Iajuddin AHMED (since 6


September 2002)
Note: The country has a caretaker government until a
general election is held; Iajuddin AHMED remains as
President and Minister of Defense, and all other Cabinet
portfolios are held by Caretaker Advisers (CAs); the Chief
CA, Fakhruddin AHMED, is roughly equivalent to a prime
minister
Elections: president elected by National Parliament for a
five-year term (eligible for a second term); election
scheduled for 16 September 2002 was not held since
Iajuddin AHMED was the only presidential candidate; he
was sworn in on 6 September 2002 (next election NA);
following legislative elections, the leader of the party that
wins the most seats is usually appointed prime minister by
the president

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Election Results: Iajuddin AHMED declared president-
elect by the Election Commission; he ran unopposed as
president; percent of National Parliament vote – NA

Legislative Branch: Unicameral National Parliament or Jatiya Sangsad; 300


seats elected by popular vote from single territorial
constituencies; members serve five-year terms; note -
parliament not in session during the extended caretaker
regime
Elections: last held 1 October 2001 (the scheduled January
2007 election has been postponed until 29 December 2008)
election results: percent of vote by party - BNP and alliance
partners 41%, AL 40%, other 19%; seats by party - BNP
193, AL 58, JI 17, JP (Ershad faction) 14, IOJ 2, JP
(Manzur) 4, other 12; note - the election of October 2001
brought to power a majority BNP government aligned with
three other smaller parties - JI, IOJ, and Jatiya Party
(Manzur)

Judicial Branch: Supreme Court (the chief justices and other judges are
appointed by the president)

Political Parties and Leaders:


Awami League or AL [Sheikh HASINA]; Bangladesh
Communist Party or BCP [Manjurul A. KHAN];
Bangladesh Nationalist Party or BNP [Khaleda ZIA];
Islami Oikya Jote or IOJ [Mufti Fazlul Haq AMINI];
Jamaat-e-Islami Bangladesh or JIB [Matiur Rahman
NIZAMI]; Jatiya Party or JP (Ershad faction) [Hussain
Mohammad ERSHAD]; Jatiya Party (Manzur faction)
[Naziur Rahman MANZUR]; Liberal Democratic Party or
LDP [Badrudozza CHOWDHURY and Oli AHMED]

Political Pressure Groups and Leaders:


Advocacy to End Gender-based Violence through the
MoWCA (Ministry of Women's and Children's Affairs)
Other: environmentalists; Islamist groups; religious leaders;
teachers; union leaders

International Organization Participation:


ADB, ARF, BIMSTEC, C, CP, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD,
ICAO, ICC, ICCt (signatory), ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD,
IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC,
IOM, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, MINURCAT,
MINURSO, MONUC, NAM, OIC, OPCW, SAARC,
SACEP, UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR,

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UNIDO, UNMIL, UNMIS, UNMIT, UNOCI, UNOMIG,
UNWTO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO,
WMO, WTO

ECONOMY:

Economy -Overview: The economy has grown 5-6% over the past few years
despite inefficient state-owned enterprises, delays in
exploiting natural gas resources, insufficient power
supplies, and slow implementation of economic reforms.
Bangladesh remains a poor, overpopulated, and
inefficiently-governed nation. Although more than half of
GDP is generated through the service sector, nearly two-
thirds of Bangladeshis are employed in the agriculture
sector, with rice as the single-most-important product.
Garment exports and remittances from Bangladeshis
working overseas, mainly in the Middle East and East Asia,
fuel economic growth.

GDP (Purchasing Power Parity):


$208.3 billion (2007 est.)

GDP (Official Exchange Rate):


$72.42 billion (2007 est.)

GDP - Real Growth Rate: 6.3% (2007 est.)

GDP - Per Capita (PPP): $1,400 (2007 est.)

GDP -composition by sector:


Agriculture: 19%
Industry: 28.7%
Services: 52.3% (2007 est.)

Labor Force: 69.4 million


Note: Extensive export of labor to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait,
UAE, Oman, Qatar, and Malaysia; workers' remittances
estimated at $4.8 billion in 2005-06. (2007 est.)

Labor Force -By Occupation:


Agriculture: 63%
Industry: 11%
Services: 26% (FY95/96)

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Unemployment Rate: 2.5% (includes underemployment) (2007 est.)

Household Income or Consumption by Percentage Share:


Lowest 10%: 3.7%
Highest 10%: 27.9% (2000)

Distribution of Family Income -Gini Index:


33.4 (2000)

Investment (Gross Fixed): 24.3% of GDP (2007 est.)

Budget: Revenues: $7.01 billion


Expenditures: $9.464 billion (2007 est.)

Public Debt: 37.4% of GDP (2007 est.)

Inflation Rate (Consumer Prices):


9.1% (2007 est.)

Central bank Discount Rate:


5% (31 December 2007)

Commercial Bank Prime Lending Rate:


16% (31 December 2007)

Stock of Money: $8.444 billion (31 December 2007)

Stock of Quasi Money: $32.4 billion (31 December 2007)

Stock of Domestic Credit: $40.15 billion (31 December 2007)

Agriculture - Products: Rice, Jute, Tea, Wheat, Sugarcane, Potatoes, Tobacco,


Pulses, Oilseeds, Spices, Fruit; Beef, Milk, Poultry

Industries: Cotton Textiles, Jute, Garments, Tea Processing, Paper


Newsprint, Cement, Chemical Fertilizer, Light
Engineering, Sugar

Industrial Production Growth Rate:


8.4% (2007 est.)

Electricity -Production: 22.78 billion kWh (2007 est.)

Electricity -Consumption: 21.37 billion kWh (2006 est.)

Electricity -Exports: 0 kWh (2007 est.)

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Electricity -Imports: 0 kWh (2007 est.)

Oil -Production: 6,746 bbl/day (2007 est.)

Oil -Consumption: 89,940 bbl/day (2006 est.)

Oil -Exports: 1,351 bbl/day (2005)

Oil -Imports: 83,220 bbl/day (2005)

Oil -Proved Reserves: 28 million bbl (1 January 2008 est.)

Natural Gas -Production: 15.7 billion cu m (2007 est.)

Natural Gas -Consumption:15.7 billion cu m (2007 est.)

Natural Gas -Exports: 0 cu m (2007 est.)

Natural Gas -Imports: 0 cu m (2007 est.)

Natural Gas -Proved Reserves:


141.6 billion cu m (1 January 2008 est.)

Current Account Balance: $804.7 million (2007 est.)

Exports: $12.45 billion (2007 est.)

Exports - Commodities: Garments, jute and jute goods, leather, frozen fish and
seafood

Exports - Partners: US 23%, Germany 13%, UK 9.1%, France 5.5%, Belgium


4% (2007)

Imports: $16.67 billion (2007 est.)

Imports - Commodities: Machinery and equipment, chemicals, iron and steel,


textiles, foodstuffs, petroleum products, cement

Imports - Partners: China 15%, India 14.3%, Kuwait 8.3%, Singapore 6.2%,
Hong Kong 4.2% (2007)

Reserves of Foreign Exchange and Gold:


$5.278 billion (31 December 2007 est.)

Debt - External: $21.23 billion (31 December 2007 est.)

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Stock of Direct Foreign Investment - At Home:
$4.971 billion (2007 est.)

Stock of Direct Foreign Investment -Abroad:


$104 million (2007 est.)

Market Value of Publicly Traded Shares:


$3.61 billion (2006)

Currency (Code): Taka (BDT)

Exchange Rates: Taka (BDT) per US dollar - 69.893 (2007), 69.031 (2006),
64.328 (2005), 59.513 (2004), 58.15 (2003)

COMMUNICATIONS:

Telephones -Main Lines in Use:


1.187 million (2007)

Telephones -Mobile Cellular:


34.37 million (2007)

Telephone System: General Assessment: inadequate for a modern country;


fixed-line telephone density remains less than 1 per 100
persons; mobile-cellular telephone subscribership has been
increasing rapidly and is approaching 25 per 100 persons
Domestic: modernizing; introducing digital systems; trunk
systems include VHF and UHF microwave radio relay
links, and some fiber-optic cable in cities
International: country code - 880; landing point for the
SEA-ME-WE-4 fiber-optic submarine cable system that
provides links to Europe, the Middle East, and Asia;
satellite earth stations - 6; international radiotelephone
communications and landline service to neighboring
countries (2007)

Radio Broadcast Stations: AM 15, FM 13, shortwave 2 (2006)

Television Broadcast Stations:


15 (1999)

Satellite Ground Stations: Dhaka, Sylhet, Betbunia and Talibabad for International
Tele-communication.

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Internet Country Code: .bd

Internet Hosts: 1,440 (2008)

Internet Users: 500,000 (2007)

TRANSPORTATION:

Airports: 16 (2007)

Airports -With Paved Runways:


Total: 15
Over 3,047 m: 1
2,438 to 3,047 m: 4
1,524 to 2,437 m: 4
914 to 1,523 m: 1
Under 914 m: 5 (2007)

Airports - With Unpaved Runways:


Total: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2007)

Pipelines: Gas 2,644 km (2007)

Railways: Total: 2,768 km


Broad gauge: 946 km 1.676-m gauge
Narrow gauge: 1,822 km 1.000-m gauge (2006)

Roadways: Total: 239,226 km


Paved: 22,726 km
Unpaved: 216,500 km (2003)

Waterways: 8,370 km
Note: Includes up to 3,060 km main cargo routes; network
reduced to 5,200 km in dry season (2006)

Merchant Marine: Total: 40


By Type: bulk carrier 3, cargo 27, container 5,
passenger/cargo 1, and petroleum tanker 4
Foreign-owned: 1 (China 1)
Registered in other countries: 10 (Comoros 2, Honduras 1,
Malta 2, Panama 2, Singapore 2, Togo 1) (2008)
Ports and Terminals: Chittagong, Mongla Port

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MILITARY:

Military Branches: Bangladesh Defense Force: Bangladesh Army, Bangladesh


Navy, Bangladesh Air Force (Bangladesh Biman Bahini,
BAF) (2008)

Military Service Age and Obligation:


16 years of age for voluntary military service; 17 years of
age for officers (both with parental consent); conscription
legally possible in emergency, but has never been
implemented (2008)

Manpower Available for Military Service:


Males age 16-49: 41,199,340 (2008 est.)

Manpower Fit for Military Service:


Males age 16-49: 31,968,168 (2008 est.)

Manpower Reaching Militarily Significant Age Annually:


Male: 1,311,850
Female: 1,246,012 (2008 est.)

Military Expenditures: 1.5% of GDP (2006)

TRANSNATIONAL ISSUES:

Disputes - International: Discussions with India remain stalled to delimit a small


section of river boundary, exchange territory for 51 small
Bangladeshi exclaves in India and 111 small Indian
exclaves in Bangladesh, allocate divided villages, and stop
illegal cross-border trade, migration, violence, and transit
of terrorists through the porous border; Bangladesh protests
India's fencing and walling off high-traffic sections of the
porous boundary; a joint Bangladesh-India boundary
commission resurveyed and reconstructed 92 missing
pillars in 2007; dispute with India over New Moore/South
Talpatty/Purbasha Island in the Bay of Bengal deters
maritime boundary delimitation; after 21 years, Bangladesh
resumes talks with Burma on delimiting a maritime
boundary

Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons:


Refugees (country of origin): 26,268 (Burma)
IDPs: 65,000 (land conflicts, religious persecution) (2007)

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HISTORY OF BANGLADESH:

Remnants of civilization in the greater Bengal region date back four thousand years,
when the region was settled by Dravidian, Tibeto-Burman, and Austro-Asiatic peoples.
The exact origin of the word "Bangla" or "Bengal" is unknown, though it is believed to
be derived from Bang, the Dravidian-speaking tribe that settled in the area around the
year 1000 BC.

After the arrival of Indo-Aryans, the kingdom of Gangaridai was formed from at least the
seventh century BC, which later united with Bihar under the Magadha, Mauryan and
Sunga Empires. Bengal was later part of the Gupta Empire and Harsha Empire from the
third to the sixth centuries CE. Following its collapse, a dynamic Bengali named
Shashanka founded an impressive yet short-lived kingdom. Shashanka is considered the
first independent king in the history of Bangladesh. After a period of anarchy, the
Buddhist Pala dynasty ruled the region for four hundred years, followed by a shorter
reign of the Hindu Sena dynasty. Islam was introduced to Bengal in the twelfth century
by Sufi missionaries, and subsequent Muslim conquests helped spread Islam throughout
the region. Bakhtiar Khilji, a Turkic general, defeated Lakshman Sen of the Sena dynasty
and conquered large parts of Bengal. The region was ruled by dynasties of Sultans and
feudal lords for the next few hundred years. By the 16th century, the Mughal Empire
controlled Bengal, and Dhaka became an important provincial centre of Mughal
administration.

European traders arrived late in the 15th century, and their influence grew until the
British East India Company gained control of Bengal following the Battle of Plassey in
1757. The bloody rebellion of 1857, known as the Sepoy Mutiny, resulted in transfer of
authority to the crown, with a British viceroy running the administration. During colonial
rule, famine racked the Indian subcontinent many times, including the Great Bengal
famine of 1943 that claimed 3 million lives.

Between 1905 and 1911, an abortive attempt was made to divide the province of Bengal
into two zones, with Dhaka being the capital of the eastern zone. When India was
partitioned in 1947, Bengal was partitioned along religious lines, with the western part
going to India and the eastern part joining Pakistan as a province called East Bengal (later
renamed East Pakistan), with its capital at Dhaka.
The Shaheed Minar, which commemorates the Language Movement, is a well known
landmark in Bangladesh.

In 1950, land reform was accomplished in East Bengal with the abolishment of the feudal
zamindari system. However, despite the economic and demographic weight of the east,
Pakistan's government and military were largely dominated by the upper classes from the
west. The Bengali Language Movement of 1952 was the first sign of friction between the
two wings of Pakistan. Dissatisfaction with the central government over economic and
cultural issues continued to rise through the next decade, during which the Awami
League emerged as the political voice of the Bengali-speaking population. It agitated for

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autonomy in the 1960s, and in 1966, its president Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was jailed; he
was released in 1969 after an unprecedented popular uprising.

In 1970, a massive cyclone devastated the coast of East Pakistan, and the central
government responded poorly. The Bengali population's anger was compounded when
Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, who’s Awami League won a majority in Parliament in the 1970
elections, was blocked from taking office. After staging compromise talks with Mujib,
President Yahya Khan arrested him on the early hours of March 26, 1971, and launched
Operation Searchlight, a sustained military assault on East Pakistan. Yahya's methods
were extremely bloody, and the violence of the war resulted in many civilian deaths.
Chief targets included intellectuals and Hindus, and about ten million refugees fled to
neighbouring India (LaPorte, p. 103). Estimates of those massacred throughout the war
range from three hundred thousand to 3 million.

Most of the Awami League leaders fled and set up a government-in-exile in Calcutta,
India. The Bangladesh Liberation War lasted for nine months. The guerrilla Mukti Bahini
and Bengali regulars eventually received support from the Indian Armed Forces in
December 1971. The Indian army, under the command of Lt. General J.S. Aurora,
achieved a decisive victory over Pakistan on December 16, 1971, taking over 90,000
prisoners of war in the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971.

After its independence, Bangladesh became a parliamentary democracy, with Mujib as


the Prime Minister. In the 1973 parliamentary elections, the Awami League gained an
absolute majority. A nationwide famine occurred during 1973 and 1974, and in early
1975, Mujib initiated a one-party socialist rule with his newly formed BAKSAL. On
August 15, 1975, Mujib and his family were assassinated by mid-level military officers.

A series of bloody coups and counter-coups in the following three months culminated in
the ascent to power of General Ziaur Rahman, who reinstated multi-party politics and
founded the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP). Zia's rule ended when he was
assassinated in 1981 by elements of the military. Bangladesh's next major ruler was
General Hossain Mohammad Ershad, who gained power in a bloodless coup in 1982 and
ruled until 1990, when he was forced to resign under western donor pressure in a major
shift in international policy after the end of communism when anti-communist dictators
were no longer felt necessary. Since then, Bangladesh has reverted to a parliamentary
democracy. Zia's widow, Khaleda Zia, led the Bangladesh Nationalist Party to
parliamentary victory at the general election in 1991 and became the first female Prime
Minister in Bangladesh's history. However, the Awami League, headed by Sheikh
Hasina, one of Mujib's surviving daughters, clinched power at the next election in 1996
but lost to the Bangladesh Nationalist Party again in 2001.

In January 11, 2007, following widespread violence, a caretaker government was


appointed to administer the general election. The country had suffered from extensive
corruption, disorder and political violence. The new caretaker government has made it a
priority to root out corruption from all levels of government. To this end, many notable

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politicians and officials, along with large numbers of lesser officials and party members,
have been arrested on corruption charges.

GOVERNMENT & POLITICS:

Bangladesh is a parliamentary democracy with Islam as the state religion. Direct


elections involving all citizens over the age 18 are held every five years for the
unicameral parliament known as Jatia Sangsad. The parliament building is known as the
Jatiyo Sangshad Bhaban designed by architect Louis Kahn and currently has 345
members including 45 reserved seats for women, elected from single-member
constituencies. The Prime Minister, as the head of government, forms the cabinet and
runs the day-to-day affairs of state. While the Prime Minister is formally appointed by the
President, he or she must be an MP who commands the confidence of the majority of
parliament. The President is the head of state, a largely ceremonial post elected by the
parliament.

However the President's powers are substantially expanded during the tenure of a
caretaker government, which is responsible for the conduct of elections and transfer of
power. The officers of the caretaker government must be non-partisan and are given three
months to complete their task. This transitional arrangement is an innovation that was
pioneered by Bangladesh in its 1991 election and then institutionalized in 1996 through
its 13th constitutional amendment.

The Constitution of Bangladesh was drafted in 1972 and has undergone fourteen
amendments. The highest judicial body is the Supreme Court. Justices are appointed by
the President. The judicial and law enforcement institutions are weak. Separation of
powers, judicial from executive was finally implemented on the 1st of November, 2007.
It is expected that this separation will make the judiciary stronger and impartial. Laws are
loosely based on English common law, but family laws such as marriage and inheritance
are based on religious scripts, and therefore differ between religious communities.

The two major parties in Bangladesh are the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) and the
Bangladesh Awami League. BNP is led by Khaleda Zia and finds its allies among
Islamist parties like Jamaat-e-Islami Bangladesh and Islami Oikya Jot, while Sheikh
Hasina's Awami League aligns with leftist and secularist parties. Hasina and Zia are bitter
rivals who have dominated politics for 15 years; both are women and each is related to
one of the leaders of the independence movement. Another important player is the Jatiya
Party, headed by former military ruler Ershad. The Awami League-BNP rivalry has been
bitter and punctuated by protests, violence and murder. Student politics is particularly
strong in Bangladesh, a legacy from the liberation movement era. Almost all parties have
highly active student wings, and students have been elected to the Parliament.
Two radical Islamist parties, Jagrata Muslim Janata Bangladesh (JMJB) and Jama'atul
Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB), were banned in February 2005. Bomb attacks taking
place since 1999 have been blamed on those groups, and hundreds of suspected members
have been detained in numerous security operations, including the head of those two

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parties in 2006. The first recorded case of a suicide bomb attack in Bangladesh took place
in November 2005.

Meanwhile the Bangladesh Military has expressed their interest in controlling the country
with statements like "own brand of Democracy" and making changes in the constitution
to allow military participation in politics. They are also assisting the interim Government
of Bangladesh in a drive against corruption which seems to be mostly targeted against the
politicians and opponents. The military has also imposed censorship of the national
media and closing down/hampering private TV stations. Illegal detentions and torture to
extract confessions have also become rampant.

FOREIGN POLICY & MILITARY:

Bangladesh pursues a moderate foreign policy that places heavy reliance on multinational
diplomacy, especially at the United Nations. In 1974 Bangladesh joined both the
Commonwealth of Nations and the United Nations and has since been elected to serve
two terms on the Security Council in 1978-1979 and 2000–2001. In the 1980s,
Bangladesh played a lead role in founding the South Asian Association for Regional
Cooperation (SAARC) in order to expand relations with other South Asian states. Since
the founding of SAARC 1985, a Bangladeshi has held the post of Secretary General on
two occasions.

Bangladesh's most important and complex foreign relationships are with India and
Pakistan. These relationships are informed by historical and cultural ties and form an
important part of the domestic political discourse.

Bangladesh's relationship with India began on a positive note because of India's


assistance in the independence war and reconstruction. Throughout the years, relations
between both countries have fluctuated for a number of reasons. The Washington Post
reported on a major source of tension between Bangladesh and India, the Farakka Dam.
In 1975, India constructed a dam on the Ganges River 11 miles (18 km) from the
Bangladeshi border. Bangladesh alleges that the dam diverts much needed water from
Bangladesh and adds a man-made disaster to the country already plagued by natural
disasters. The dam also has terrible ecological consequences. On the other hand, India has
voiced concerns about anti-Indian separatists and Islamic militants allegedly being
harbored across their 2,500-mile (4,000 km) border, as well as the flow of illegal
migrants, and is building a fence along most of it. But at the 2007 SAARC meeting both
nations pledged to work cooperatively on security, economic and border issues.

The current strength of the army is around 200,000, the air force 7,000,[citation needed]
and navy 14,950.[34] In addition to traditional defense roles, the military has been called
on to provide support to civil authorities for disaster relief and internal security during
periods of political unrest. Bangladesh is not currently active in any ongoing war, but it
did contribute 2,300 troops to the coalition that fought in the 1991 Gulf War and
Bangladesh is consistently a top contributor to UN peacekeeping forces around the world.

17
As of May 2007, Bangladesh had major deployments in Democratic Republic of Congo,
Liberia, Sudan, Timor-Leste and Côte d'Ivoire.

Bangladesh enjoys relatively warm ties with the People's Republic of China which has,
particularly in the past decade, increased economic cooperation with the South Asian
nation. Between 2006-07, trade between the two nations rose by 28.5% and there have
been agreements to grant various Bangladeshi commodities tariff-free access to the
Chinese market. Cooperation between the Military of Bangladesh and the People's
Liberation Army is also increasing, with joint military agreements signed and Bangladesh
procuring Chinese arms which range from small arms to large naval surface combatants
such as the Chinese Type 053H1 Missile Frigate.

DIVISONS, DISTRICTS & UPZILAS:

Bangladesh is divided into six administrative divisions, each named after their respective
divisional headquarters: Barisal, Chittagong, Dhaka, Khulna, Rajshahi, and Sylhet.

Divisions are subdivided into districts (zila). There are 64 districts in Bangladesh, each
further subdivided into upazila (subdistricts) or thana ("police stations"). The area within
each police station, except for those in metropolitan areas, is divided into several unions,
with each union consisting of multiple villages. In the metropolitan areas, police stations
are divided into wards, which are further divided into mahallas. There are no elected
officials at the divisional, district or upazila levels, and the administration is composed
only of government officials. Direct elections are held for each union (or ward), electing
a chairperson and a number of members. In 1997, a parliamentary act was passed to
reserve three seats (out of twelve) in every union for female candidates.

Dhaka is the capital and largest city of Bangladesh. Other major cities include
Chittagong, Khulna, Rajshahi, and Barisal.These metropolitan cities have mayoral
elections, while other municipalities elect a chairperson. Mayors and chairpersons are
elected for a span of five years.

CITY CITY POPULATION METRO POPULATION


DHAKA 11,918,442 23,024,863
CHITTAGONG 6,920,222 11,256,369
KHULNA 3,400,689 8,492,659
RAJSHAHI 2,727,083 4,983,641
SYLHET 1,339,368 2,658,025
BARISAL 1,291,769 2,365,125

18
GEOGRAPHY & CLIMATE:

Bangladesh is located in the low-lying Ganges-Brahmaputra River Delta or Ganges


Delta. This delta is formed by the confluence of the Ganges (local name Padma or
Pôdda), Brahmaputra (Jamuna or Jomuna), and Meghna rivers and their respective
tributaries. The Ganges unites with the Jamuna (main channel of the Brahmaputra) and
later joins the Meghna to eventually empty into the Bay of Bengal. The alluvial soil
deposited by these rivers has created some of the most fertile plains in the world.
Bangladesh has 58 trans-boundary rivers, making water issues politically complicated to
resolve - in most cases as the lower riparian state to India.

Most parts of Bangladesh are less than 12 meters (39 ft) above the sea level, and it is
believed that about 50% of the land would be flooded if the sea level were to rise by a
meter (3 ft).

The highest point in Bangladesh is in Mowdok range at 1,052 meters (3,451 ft) in the
Chittagong Hill Tracts to the southeast of the country.[40] A major part of the coastline
comprises a marshy jungle, the Sundarbans, the largest mangrove forest in the world and
home to diverse flora and fauna, including the Royal Bengal Tiger. In 1997, this region
was declared endangered.

Straddling the Tropic of Cancer, Bangladeshi climate is tropical with a mild winter from
October to March, a hot, humid summer from March to June. A warm and humid
monsoon season lasts from June to October and supplies most of the country's rainfall.
Natural calamities, such as floods, tropical cyclones, tornadoes, and tidal bores occur
almost every year, combined with the effects of deforestation, soil degradation and
erosion. Cox's Bazar, south of the city of Chittagong, has a beach that stretches
uninterrupted over 120 kilometers (75 mi).

In September 1998 Bangladesh saw the most severe flooding in modern world history. As
the Brahmaputra, Ganges and Meghna spilt over and swallowed 300,000 houses, 6,000
miles (9,700 km) of road and 1,600 miles (2,600 km) of embankment 1,000 people were
killed and 30 million more were made homeless with 135,000 cattle killed, 50 square
kilometers of land destroyed and 11,000 kilometers of roads damaged or destroyed. Two-
thirds of the country was underwater. There were several reasons for the severity of the
flooding. Firstly, there were unusually high monsoon rains. Secondly, the Himalayas
shed off an equally unusually high amount of melt water that year. Trees that usually
intercept rain water were cut down for firewood or to make space for animals.

ECONOMY:

Despite continuous domestic and international efforts to improve economic and


demographic prospects, Bangladesh remains a developing nation. Its per capita income in
2006 was US$1400 (adjusted by purchasing power parity) compared to the world average
of $10,200.

19
Jute was once the economic engine of the country. Its share of the world export market
peaked in the Second World War and the late 1940s at 80% and even in the early 1970s
accounted for 70% of its export earnings. However, polypropylene products began to
substitute for jute products worldwide and the jute industry started to decline. Bangladesh
grows very significant quantities of rice, tea and mustard. Although two-thirds of
Bangladeshis are farmers, more than three quarters of Bangladesh’s export earnings come
from the garment industry, which began attracting foreign investors in the 1980s due to
cheap labor and low conversion cost. In 2002, the industry exported US$5 billion worth
of products. The industry now employs more than 3 million workers, 90% of whom are
women. A large part of foreign currency earnings also comes from the remittances sent
by expatriates living in other countries.

Obstacles to growth include frequent cyclones and floods, inefficient state-owned


enterprises, mismanaged port facilities, a growth in the labor force that has outpaced jobs,
inefficient use of energy resources (such as natural gas), insufficient power supplies, slow
implementation of economic reforms, political infighting and corruption. According to
the World Bank, "among Bangladesh’s most significant obstacles to growth are poor
governance and weak public institutions."

Despite these hurdles, the country has achieved an average annual growth rate of 5%
since 1990, according to the World Bank. Bangladesh has seen expansion of its middle
class, and its consumer industry has also grown. In December 2005, four years after its
report on the emerging "BRIC" economies (Brazil, Russia, India, and China), Goldman
Sachs named Bangladesh one of the "Next Eleven, along with Egypt, Indonesia, Pakistan
and seven other countries. Bangladesh has seen a dramatic increase in foreign direct
investment. A number of multinational corporations and local big business houses such
as Beximco, Square, Akij Group, Ispahani, Navana Group, Habib Group, KDS Group
and multinationals such as Unocal Corporation and Chevron, have made major
investments, with the natural gas sector being a priority. In December 2005, the Central
Bank of Bangladesh projected GDP growth around 6.5%.

One significant contributor to the development of the economy has been the widespread
propagation of micro credit by Muhammad Yunus (awarded the Nobel peace prize in
2006) through the Grameen Bank. By the late 1990s, Grameen Bank had 2.3 million
members, along with 2.5 million members of other similar organizations.

In order to enhance economic growth, the government set up several export processing
zones to attract foreign investment. These are managed by the Bangladesh Export
Processing Zone Authority.

The analysis can be performed on a product, on a service, a company or even on an


individual.

MOVES TOWARD A MARKET ECONMY:

20
Following the violent events of 1971 during the fight for independence, Bangladesh--with
the help of large infusions of donor relief and development aid--slowly began to turn its
attention to developing new industrial capacity and rehabilitating its economy. The static
economic model adopted by its early leadership, however--including the nationalization
of much of the industrial sector--resulted in inefficiency and economic stagnation.
Beginning in late 1975, the government gradually gave greater scope to private sector
participation in the economy, a pattern that has continued. A few state-owned enterprises
have been privatized, but many, including major portions of the banking and jute sectors,
remain under government control. Population growth, inefficiency in the public sector,
resistance to developing the country's richest natural resources, and limited capital have
all continued to restrict economic growth.

In the mid-1980s, there were encouraging, if halting, signs of progress. Economic


policies aimed at encouraging private enterprise and investment, denationalizing public
industries, reinstating budgetary discipline, and liberalizing the import regime were
accelerated. From 1991 to 1993, the government successfully followed an enhanced
structural adjustment facility (ESAF) with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) but
failed to follow through on reforms in large part because of preoccupation with the
government's domestic political troubles. In the late 1990s the government's economic
policies became more entrenched, and some of the early gains were lost, which was
highlighted by a precipitous drop in foreign direct investment in 2000 and 2001. In June
2003 the IMF approved 3-year, $490-million plan as part of the Poverty Reduction and
Growth Facility (PRGF) for Bangladesh that aimed to support the government's
economic reform program up to 2006. Seventy million dollars was made available
immediately. In the same vein the World Bank approved $536 million in interest-free
loans.

Efforts to achieve Bangladesh's macroeconomic goals have been problematic. The


privatization of public sector industries has proceeded at a slow pace--due in part to
worker unrest in affected industries--although on June 30, 2002, the government took a
bold step as it closed down the Adamjee Jute Mill, the country's largest and most costly
state-owned enterprise. The government also has proven unable to resist demands for
wage hikes in government-owned industries. Access to capital is impeded. State-owned
banks, which control about three-fourths of deposits and loans, carry classified loan
burdens of about 50%.

The IMF and World Bank predict GDP growth over the next 5 years will be about 6.0%,
well short of the 8%-9% needed to lift Bangladesh out of its severe poverty. The initial
impact of the end of quotas under the Multi-Fiber Arrangement has been positive for
Bangladesh, with continuing investment in the ready-made garment sector, which has
experienced annual export growth of around 20%. Downward price pressure means
Bangladesh must continue to cut final delivered costs if it is to remain competitive in the
world market. Foreign investors in a broad range of sectors are increasingly frustrated
with the politics of confrontation, the level of corruption, and the slow pace of reform.
While investors view favorably recent steps by the interim government to address

21
corruption, governance, and infrastructure issues, most believe it is too early to assess the
long-term impact of these developments.

AGRICULTURE:

Most Bangladeshis earn their living from agriculture. Although rice and jute are the
primary crops, maize and vegetables are assuming greater importance. Due to the
expansion of irrigation networks, some wheat producers have switched to cultivation of
maize which is used mostly as poultry feed. Tea is grown in the northeast. Because of
Bangladesh's fertile soil and normally ample water supply, rice can be grown and
harvested three times a year in many areas. Due to a number of factors, Bangladesh's
labor-intensive agriculture has achieved steady increases in food grain production despite
the often unfavorable weather conditions. These include better flood control and
irrigation, a generally more efficient use of fertilizers, and the establishment of better
distribution and rural credit networks. With 28.8 million metric tons produced in 2005-
2006 (July-June), rice is Bangladesh's principal crop. By comparison, wheat output in
2005-2006 was 9 million metric tons. Population pressure continues to place a severe
burden on productive capacity, creating a food deficit, especially of wheat. Foreign
assistance and commercial imports fill the gap. Underemployment remains a serious
problem, and a growing concern for Bangladesh's agricultural sector will be its ability to
absorb additional manpower. Finding alternative sources of employment will continue to
be a daunting problem for future governments, particularly with the increasing numbers
of landless peasants who already account for about half the rural labor force.

INDUSTRY AND INVESTMENT:

Fortunately for Bangladesh, many new jobs--1.8 million, mostly for women--have been
created by the country's dynamic private ready-made garment industry, which grew at
double-digit rates through most of the 1990s. The labor-intensive process of ship-
breaking for scrap has developed to the point where it now meets most of Bangladesh's
domestic steel needs. Other industries include sugar, tea, leather goods, newsprint,
pharmaceutical, and fertilizer production. The country has done less well, however, in
expanding its export base--garments account for more than three-fourths of all exports,
dwarfing the country's historic cash crop, jute, along with leather, shrimp,
pharmaceuticals, and ceramics.

Despite the country's politically motivated general strikes, poor infrastructure, and weak
financial system, Bangladeshi entrepreneurs have shown themselves adept at competing
in the global garments marketplace. Bangladesh exports significant amounts of garments
and knitwear to the U.S. and the European Union (EU) market. As noted, the initial
impact of the end of quotas on Bangladesh's ready-made garment industry has been
positive. Downward price pressures, however, mean Bangladesh must continue to cut
final delivered costs if it is to remain competitive in the world market.

22
The Bangladesh Government continues to court foreign investment, something it did
fairly well in the 1990s in private power generation and gas exploration and production,
as well as in other sectors such as cellular telephony, textiles, and pharmaceuticals. In
1989, the same year it signed a bilateral investment treaty with the United States, it
established a board of investment to simplify approval and start-up procedures for foreign
investors, although in practice the board has done little to increase investment.
Bangladesh also has established export processing zones in Chittagong (1983), Dhaka
(1994), Comilla (2000), Mongla (2001), Iswardi (2005), Uttara (2006), and Karnafully
(2007).

The most important reforms Bangladesh should make to be able to compete in a global
economy are to privatize state-owned enterprises (SOEs), deregulate and promote foreign
investment in high-potential industries like energy and telecommunications, and take
decisive steps toward combating corruption and strengthening rule of law.

DEMOGRAPHICS:

Recent (2005-2007) estimates of Bangladesh's population range from 142 to 159 million,
making it the 7th most populous nation in the world. With a land area of 144,000 square
kilometers, ranked 94th, the population density is remarkable. A striking comparison is
offered by the fact that Russia's population is slightly smaller even though Russia has a
land area of 17.5 million square kilometers, at least 120 times bigger than Bangladesh.
Bangladesh has the highest population density in the world, excluding a handful of city-
states. Bangladesh's population growth was among the highest in the world in the 1960s
and 1970s, when the count grew from 50 to 90 million, but with the promotion of birth
control in the 1980s, the growth rate slowed. The total fertility rate is now 3.1 children
per woman, compared with 6.2 thirty years ago.[citation needed] The population is
relatively young, with the 0–25 age group comprising 60%, while 3% are 65 or older.
Life expectancy is 63 years for both males and females.[53]

The majority ethnic group of Bangladesh is the Bengali people, comprising 98% of the
population. The remainder are mostly Bihari migrants and indigenous tribal groups.
There are thirteen tribal groups located in the Chittagong Hill Tracts; the most populous
of the tribes are the Chakmas. The region has been a source for ethnic tension since the
inception of Bangladesh. The largest tribal groups outside the Hill Tracts are the Santhals
and the Garos (Achiks). There are also Kaibartta, Mundas, Oraons, and Zomi ethnic
groups. Human trafficking has been a lingering problem in Bangladesh and illegal
immigration has remained a cause of friction with Burma and India.

The official and most widely used language in Bangladesh, as in West Bengal, is Bangla
or Bengali, an Indo-Aryan language of Sanskrit origin with its own script. English is used
as second language among the middle and upper classes and in higher education. Since a
President Order in 1987, Bangla is used for all official correspondence except those that
are to foreign recipients.

23
Health and education levels have recently improved as poverty levels have decreased.
Most Bangladeshis are rural, living on subsistence farming. Health problems abound,
ranging from surface water contamination, to arsenic contamination of groundwater, and
diseases including malaria, leptospirosis and dengue. The literacy rate in Bangladesh is
approximately 41%. There is gender disparity, though, as literacy rates are 50% among
men and 31% among women, according to a 2004 UNICEF estimate. Literacy has gone
up due to many programmes introduced in the country. Among the most successful ones
are the Food for education (FFE) programme introduced in 1993, and a stipend
programme for women at the primary and secondary levels.

The major religion practiced in Bangladesh is Islam (89.7%) and a sizable minority
adheres to Hinduism (9.2%). About 96% of the Muslims are Sunni while over 3% are
Shi'a and remainders are Ahmadis. Ethnic Biharis are predominantly Shia Muslims.
Other religious groups include Buddhists (0.7%, mostly Theravada), Christians (0.3%,
mostly of the Roman Catholic denomination), and Animists (0.1%). Among Muslim-
majority countries, Bangladesh ranks fourth after Indonesia, Pakistan and India by the
number of Muslims, with over 130 million. Islam is the state religion of Bangladesh, but
other religions may also be practiced in harmony. The United Nations has recognized the
country mainly as a moderate Muslim democratic country.

CULTURE:

A new state for an old nation, Bangladesh has a culture that encompasses elements both
old and new. The Bengali language boasts a rich literary heritage, which Bangladesh
shares with the Indian state of West Bengal. The earliest literary text in Bangla is the
eighth century Charyapada. Bangla literature in the medieval age was often either
religious (e.g. Chandidas), or adaptations from other languages (e.g. Alaol). Bangla
literature matured in the nineteenth century. Its greatest icons are the poets Rabindranath
Tagore and Kazi Nazrul Islam. Bangladesh also has a long tradition in folk literature,
evidenced by Maimansingha Gitika, Thakurmar Jhuli or stories related to Gopal Bhar.

The musical tradition of Bangladesh is lyrics-based, with minimal instrumental


accompaniment. The Baul tradition is a unique heritage of Bangla folk music, and there
are numerous other musical traditions in Bangladesh, which vary from one region to the
other. Gombhira, Bhatiali, Bhawaiya are a few of the better-known musical forms. Folk
music of Bengal is often accompanied by the ektara, an instrument with only one string.
Other instruments include the dotara, dhol, flute, and tabla. Bangladesh also has an active
heritage in North Indian classical music. Similarly, Bangladeshi dance forms draw from
folk traditions, especially those of the tribal groups, as well as the broader Indian dance
tradition. Bangladesh produces about 80 films a year. Mainstream Hindi films are also
quite popular. Around 200 dailies are published in Bangladesh, along with more than
1800 periodicals. However, regular readership is low, nearly about 15% of the
population. Bangladeshis listen to a variety of local and national radio programmes from
Bangladesh Betar, as well as Bangla services from the BBC and Voice of America. There

24
is a state-controlled television channel, but in the last few years, privately owned
channels have grown considerably.
The culinary tradition of Bangladesh has close relations to Indian and Middle Eastern
cuisine as well as having many unique traits. Rice and curry are traditional favourites.
Bangladeshis make distinctive sweetmeats from milk products; some common ones are
Rôshogolla, Chômchôm and Kalojam.

The sari (shaŗi) is by far the most widely worn dress by Bangladeshi women. Dhaka in
particular is renowned for producing saris from exquisite Jamdani muslin. The salwar
kameez (shaloar kamiz) is also quite popular, and in urban areas some women wear
Western attire. Among men, Western attire is more widely adopted. Men also wear the
kurta-paejama combination, often on religious occasions, and the lungi, a kind of long
skirt.

The two Eids, Eid ul-Fitr and Eid ul-Adha are the largest festivals in the Islamic calendar.
The day before Eid ul-Fitr is called Chãd Rat (the night of the Moon), and is often
marked by firecrackers. Other Muslim holidays are also observed. Major Hindu festivals
are Durga Puja and Saraswati Puja. Buddha Purnima, which marks the birth of Gautama
Buddha, is one of the most important Buddhist festivals while Christmas, called Bôŗodin
(Great day) in Bangla is celebrated by the minority Christian population. The most
important secular festival is Pohela Baishakh or Bengali New Year, the beginning of the
Bengali calendar. Other festivities include Nobanno, Poush parbon (festival of Poush)
and observance of national days like Shohid Dibosh.

SPORTS:

Cricket is the most popular sport in Bangladesh. In 2000, the Bangladeshi cricket team
was granted Test cricket status and be able to play other test playing nations. Other
popular sports include association football, field hockey, tennis, badminton, handball,
volleyball, chess, carrom games, and kabadi ( a seven-a-side team-sport played without a
ball or any other equipment, which is the national sport of Bangladesh). The Bangladesh
Sports Control Board regulates twenty-nine different sporting federations.

25
PROJECT MANAGEMENT

WHAT IS PROJECT MANAGEMENT:

The word project comes from the Latin word projectum from the Latin verb proicere, "to
throw something forwards" which in turn comes from pro-, which denotes something that
precedes the action of the next part of the word in time (paralleling the Greek πρό) and
iacere, "to throw". The word "project" thus actually originally meant "something that
comes before anything else happens".

When the English language initially adopted the word, it referred to a plan of something,
not to the act of actually carrying this plan out. Something performed in accordance with
a project became known as an "object".

Project management is the discipline of planning, organizing and managing resources to


bring about the successful completion of specific project goals and objectives.

A project is a finite endeavor (having specific start and completion dates) undertaken to
create a unique product or service which brings about beneficial change or added value.
This finite characteristic of projects stands in sharp contrast to processes, or operations,
which are permanent or semi-permanent functional work to repetitively produce the same
product or service. In practice, the management of these two systems is often found to be
quite different, and as such requires the development of distinct technical skills and the
adoption of separate management philosophy.

The primary challenge of project management is to achieve all of the project goals and
objectives while honoring the project constraints. Typical constraints are scope, time and
budget. The secondary—and more ambitious—challenge is to optimize the allocation and
integration of inputs necessary to meet pre-defined objectives. A project is a carefully
defined set of activities that use resources (money, people, materials, energy, space,
provisions, communication, motivation, etc.) to achieve the project goals and objectives.

HISTORY OF PROJECT MANAGEMENT:

As a discipline, Project Management developed from different fields of application


including construction, engineering and defense. In the United States, the forefather of
project management is Henry Gantt, called the father of planning and control techniques,
who is famously known for his use of the Gantt chart as a project management tool, for
being an associate of Frederick Winslow Taylor's theories of scientific management, and
for his study of the work and management of Navy ship building. His work is the
forerunner to many modern project management tools including the work breakdown
structure (WBS) and resource allocations.

26
The 1950s marked the beginning of the modern Project Management era. Again, in the
United States, prior to the 1950s, projects were managed on an ad hoc basis using mostly
Gantt Charts, and informal techniques and tools. At that time, two mathematical project
scheduling models were developed: (1) the "Program Evaluation and Review Technique"
or PERT, developed by Booz-Allen & Hamilton as part of the United States Navy's (in
conjunction with the Lockheed Corporation) Polaris missile submarine program;[2] and
(2) the "Critical Path Method" (CPM) developed in a joint venture by both DuPont
Corporation and Remington Rand Corporation for managing plant maintenance projects.
These mathematical techniques quickly spread into many private enterprises.

At the same time, technology for project cost estimating, cost management, and
engineering economics was evolving, with pioneering work by Hans Lang and others. In
1956, the American Association of Cost Engineers (now AACE International; the
Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering) was formed by early practitioners
of project management and the associated specialties of planning and scheduling, cost
estimating, and cost/schedule control (project control). AACE has continued its
pioneering work and in 2006 released the first ever integrated process for portfolio,
program and project management (Total Cost Management Framework).

In 1969, the Project Management Institute (PMI) was formed to serve the interests of the
project management industry. The premise of PMI is that the tools and techniques of
project management are common even among the widespread application of projects
from the software industry to the construction industry. In 1981, the PMI Board of
Directors authorized the development of what has become A Guide to the Project
Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK Guide), containing the standards and
guidelines of practice that are widely used throughout the profession.

The International Project Management Association (IPMA), founded in Europe in 1967,


has undergone a similar development and instituted the IPMA Competence Baseline
(ICB). The focus of the ICB also begins with knowledge as a foundation, and adds
considerations about relevant experience, interpersonal skills, and competence. Both
organizations are now participating in the development of an ISO project management
standard.

PROJECT MANAGEMENT APPROACHES:

There are several approaches that can be taken to managing project activities including
agile, interactive, incremental, and phased approaches.

Regardless of the approach employed, careful consideration needs to be given to clarify


surrounding project objectives, goals, and importantly, the roles and responsibilities of all
participants and stakeholders.

A traditional phased approach identifies a sequence of steps to be completed. In the


"traditional approach", we can distinguish 5 components of a project (4 stages plus
control) in the development of a project:

27
Typical development phases of a project:

* Project initiation stage;


* Project planning or design stage;
* Project execution or production stage;
* Project monitoring and controlling systems;
* Project completion stage.

Not all the projects will visit every stage as projects can be terminated before they reach
completion. Some projects probably don't have the planning and/or the monitoring. Some
projects will go through steps 2, 3 and 4 multiple times.

Many industries utilize variations on these stages. For example, in bricks and mortar
architectural design, projects typically progress through stages like Pre-Planning,
Conceptual Design, Schematic Design, Design Development, Construction Drawings (or
Contract Documents), and Construction Administration. In software development, this
approach is often known as "waterfall development", i.e., one series of tasks after another
in linear sequence. In software development many organizations have adapted the
Rational Unified Process (RUP) to fit this methodology, although RUP does not require
or explicitly recommend this practice. Waterfall development can work for small tightly
defined projects, but for larger projects of undefined or unknowable scope, it is less
suited. The Cone of Uncertainty explains some of this as the planning made on the initial
phase of the project suffers from a high degree of uncertainty. This becomes specially
true as software development is often the realization of a new or novel product, this
method has been widely accepted as ineffective for software projects where requirements
are largely unknowable up front and susceptible to change. While the names may differ
from industry to industry, the actual stages typically follow common steps to problem
solving — "defining the problem, weighing options, choosing a path, implementation and
evaluation."

28
SWOT ANALSYIS

SWOT Analysis is a planning tool used to understand the Strengths, Weaknesses,


Opportunities, and Threats involved in a project or in a business. It involves specifying
the objective of the business or project and identifying the internal and external factors
that are supportive or unfavorable to achieving that objective. SWOT is often used as part
of a strategic planning process. SWOT is an acronym for Strengths, Weaknesses,
Opportunities, and Threats. The analysis can be performed on a product, on a service, a
company or even on an individual.

To do a SWOT analysis that is both effective and meaningful requires time and a
significant resource. This cannot be done effectively by just one person. It requires a team
effort. The methodology has the advantage of being used as a 'quick and dirty' tool or a
comprehensive management too, and that one can lead to the other. This flexibility is one
of the factors that have contributed to its success.

The term "SWOT ANALYSIS" is in itself an interesting term. Many believe the SWOT
is not an analysis, but a summary of a set of previous analysis. The analysis or more
correctly interpretation comes after the S W O T summary has been produced.

DEFINATION

A process generates information that is helpful in matching an organization or group’s


goals, programs, and capacities to the social environment in which it operates.

STRENGTHS

• Positive tangible and intangible attributes, internal to an organization.


• They are within the organization’s control.

WEAKNESS

• Factors that are within an organization’s control that detracts from its
ability to attain the desired goal.
• Which areas might the organization improve?

OPPORTUNITIES

• External attractive factors that represent the reason for an organization to


exist and develop.
• What opportunities exist in the environment, which will propel the
organization?
• Identify them by their “time frames”
.

29
THREATS

• External factors, beyond an organization’s control, which could place the


organization mission or operation at risk.
 The organization may benefit by having contingency plans to address them if they
should occur.
 Classify them by their “seriousness” and “probability of occurrence”.

BACKGROUND TO THE TOOL

The origins of the SWOT analysis technique is credited by Albert Humphrey, who led a
research project at Stanford University in the 1960s and 1970s using data from many top
companies.

The goal was to identify why corporate planning failed. The resulting research identified
a number of key areas and the tool used to explore each of the critical areas was called
SOFT analysis. Humphrey and the original research team used the categories “What is
good in the present is Satisfactory, good in the future is an Opportunity; bad in the
present is a Fault and bad in the future is a Threat.” This was called the SOFT analysis. In
1964 Urick and Orr at a conference changed the F to a W, and it has stuck as that, soFt to
sWot.

Some researchers reference the 1965 publication "business Policy, text and cases" by
Learned, Christensen, Andrews and Guth (from Harvard University) in which a
framework is used which closely resembles SWOT, however these words are not used
and certainly the framework is not described as succinctly as we know it today. In this
book the terms used are: Opportunities, risks, environment & problems of other
industries. In fact these authors reference a course note from K R Andrews “a concept of
corporate strategy” for much of the strategy framework.

The SWOT analysis tool is great for developing an understanding of an organization or


situation and decision-making for all sorts of situations in business, organizations and for
individuals. The SWOT analysis headings provide a good framework for reviewing
strategy, position and direction of a company, product, project or person (career). Doing a
SWOT analysis can be very simple, however its strengths lie in its flexibility and
experienced application. Remember the capture is only part of the picture. The analysis
can be performed on a product, on a service, a company or even on an individual.

APPLICATIONS

An analysis can be used for:

• Workshop sessions
• Brainstorm meetings
• Problem solving

30
• Planning
• Product evaluation
• Competitor evaluation
• Personal Development Planning
• Decision Making (with force field analysis)

AIM OF SWOT ANALYSIS

• Reveal your competitive advantages


• Analyze your prospects for sales, profitability and product development
• Prepare your company for problems
• Allow for the development of contingency plans

Done properly, SWOT will give you the BIG PICTURE of the MOST IMPORTANT
FACTORS that influence SURVIVAL and PROSPERITY. As well as a PLAN to ACT
ON.

31
CHAPTER TWO

“STRENGTH”

32
 SCOPE FOR FRESH AND NEW PROJECT

To make new investment in Bangladesh and make it more attractive and competitive,
Bangladesh Government has announced several incentives for the investors. These
incentives are updated on a yearly basis and new incentives are also declared.

Bangladesh offers tax holiday facility and depreciation allowance facility to strengthen a
newly established business. These facilities are subjected to some conditions and
provided by the Board of Investment. For some special purposes Income Tax and other
taxes like Value Added Tax (VAT) have been exempted. Cash incentives are declared for
the thrust sectors. Foreign investors can start 100% owned new companies or they can go
for joint ventures. There is a very state forward procedure to exit from the business. The
procedure of remittance of profits, dividends, sale proceeds, capital gains from portfolio
investment, principal and interest of loans, technical fees, royalties against technical
assistance/royalty agreements and savings is very comfortable and no prior permission is
needed from Bangladesh Bank for those purposes. The issue of double taxation has been
well taken care off through some treaties.

Bangladesh offers citizenship, permanent resident-ship and multiple entry visas for the
foreign investors.

Tax holiday Facility (THF):


Incentive:
* 5 years: For industries located in Dhaka and Chittagong Divisions ( excluding 3 Hill
Tract districts of Chittagong Division).
* 7 years: For industries located in Khulna, Sylhet, Barisal, and Rajshahi, Divisions
and the 3 Chittagong hill districts.
* NBR issues tax holiday certificate within 90 days of submission of applacation.

Depreciation Allowance:
Incentive:
Accelerated Depreciation Allowance: Only New Industrial undertakings will enjoy
accelerated depreciation allowance in lieu of tax holiday as per following schedule:

* Industrial undertaking set up in the areas falling within the cities of Dhaka,
Narayangonj, Chittagong and Khulna and areas within a radius of 10 miles from the
municipal limits of those cities: @ 100% on the cost of a machinery for the first year
only.
* Industrial undertaking set up elsewhere in the country: @ 80% on the cost of
machinery in the first year and @ 20% in the second year.

Duty Exemption and Concessions on Machinery:


Incentive:
* For 100% export oriented industry, no import duty is charged in case of capital
machinery and spares up to 10% value of such capital machinery.

33
* For other industry, import duty, 2 7.5% ad valorem, is payable on capital machinery
and spares imported for initial installation or BMR/BMRE of the existing industries. The
value of spare parts should not, however, exceed 10% of the total C&F value of the
machinery.
* Value Added Tax (VAT) is not payable for imported capital machinery and spares.
* Import duty @ 7.5% is secured in the form of bank guarantee or an indemnity bond
is returned after installation of the machinery.

Avoidance of Double Taxation:


Incentive:
* For Foreign Investors, double taxation can be avoided on the basis of Bilateral
Double Taxation Avoidance Treaties (DTTs).
* Exemption of income tax up to 3 years fro the expatriate employees in industries
specified in the relevant schedule of Income Tax ordinance.

Remittance:
Incentive:
* For Foreign Investors, remittance of royalty, technical know-how, technical
assistance fee.

Repatriation:
Incentive:
* For Foreign Investors, full repatriation of invested capital, profit and dividend is
allowed.

Exit:
Incentive:
* Foreign Investors can wind up on investment either through a decision of the AGM
or EGM.

Ownership:
Incentive:
* Foreign Investors can set up ventures either wholly owned or in joint collaboration
with local partner.

Incentives to Non Resident Bangladeshi (NRBs):


Incentive:
* Investment of NRBs is treated at par with FDI and enjoys facilities similar to those of
foreign investors.
* NRBs can buy newly issued shares/debentures of Bangladeshi companies.
* A quota of 10% has been fixed for NRBs in primary public shares.
* They can maintain foreign currency deposits in the Non-resident Foreign Currency
Deposit (NRFD) account.
* On fulfillment of certain conditions “Important Non0Resident Bangladeshi (INRB)”
is selected.

34
Other Incentives:
 Tax exemption on royalties, technical know-how fees received by any foreign
collaborator, firm, company and expert.
 Tax exemption on the interest on foreign loan under certain conditions.
 Exemption of income tax up to 3 years for the foreign technicians employed in
industries specified in the relevant schedule of the income tax ordinance.
 Tax exemption on income of the private sector power generation company for 15
years from the date of commercial production.
 Multiple entry visa facility for the prospective new investors.
 Re-investment of repatriable dividend treated as new investment.
 Citizenship by investing a minimum of US$ 500,000 or by transferring US$
1,000,000 to any recognized financial institution (non-repartriable).
 Permanent resident ship by investing a minimum of US$ 75,000 (non-
repartriable).
 Tax exemption on the capital gain from the transfer of shares of public limited
companies listed with a stock exchange.
 There is no discrimination in case of duties and taxes for the same type of
industries set up by foreign and local investors and in the public and private
sectors.

Incentives to Export-Oriented and Export-Linkage Industries:


Export-oriented industrialization is one of the major objectives of the Industrial Policy
1999. Export-oriented industries are given priority and public policy supports are ensured
in this respect. An industry exporting at least 80% of its manufactured goods or an
industry contributing at least 80% of its products as an input to finished exportable, and
similarly, a business entity exporting at least 80% of its services including technology
related products are considered as an export-oriented industry. To make investment in
100% export-oriented industries attractive, the following incentives and facilities will be
provided:

 Duty free import of capital machinery and spare parts up to 10% of the value of
such capital machinery
 Bonded warehouse and back to back letter of credit facility.
 Duty drawback facility.
 Providing loans up to 90% of the value against irrevocable and confirmed letter of
credit/sales agreement.
 Supporting backward linkage “deemed exporters”.
 The export oriented industries, further to the provisions of Bangladesh Bank
foreign exchange regulations, are entitled to receive additional foreign exchange,
on case to case basis, for publicity campaign, opening overseas offices and
participating in international trade fairs.
 The entire export earning from handicraft and cottage industries are exempted
from income tax. For all other industries, income tax rebate on export earning are
given.

35
 The facility for importing new materials including in the banned/restricted list, but
required in the manufacture of exportable commodities.
 The import of specified quantities of duty-free samples for manufacturing
exportable products is allowed consistent with the prevailing relevant government
policy.
 The local products supplied to local industries or projects against foreign
exchange L/C are treated as indirect exports and are entitled to all export
facilities.
 The export Credit Guarantee Scheme facility.
 10% products of the enterprises, located in both public and private EPZs are
allowed to be exported to domestic tariff area against foreign currency L/C on
payment of applicable duties and taxes.
 100% export-oriented industry outside EPZ is allowed to sell 20% of their
products in the domestic market on payment of applicable duties and taxes.
 The export-oriented industries which are identified by the Government as “Thrust
Sector” are provided special facilities and venture capital support.
 Export-oriented industries are exempt from paying local taxes such as municipal
tax.

Apart from the above mentioned facilities, other facilities announced and provided in the
Export Policy is applicable to export oriented and export linkage industries.
BOI Counseling service at Investment Facilities and Service Section provides all
necessary assistance with regard to the above incentives.

Additional Incentives for EPZ Industries:


 Freedom from National Import Policy restrictions
 Offshore banking facilities
 Relocation of existing industries from abroad
 Back to back letter of credit facility for certain types of industries for import of
raw materials.
 Availability of food stuff and beverage on payment of nominal tax for foreigners
working in EPZ
 Exemption of customs duties and sales tax on imported motor vehicles for
executive of enterprises.
 One stop service to investors.
 All customs formalities, within EPZs.
 Additional Incentives for Small and Cottage Industries BSCIC registered units are
exempt from payment of advance income tax on import of their raw materials.

36
 AVAILIBILITY OF MANPOWER IN BANGLADESH

Unemployed labor force of Bangladesh is estimated to be about 15 million. Beside a huge


number of un-skilled labor force, skilled, semi-skilled and professional manpower is also
available for foreign employment. Some relevant data in this regard are given below:-

(A) Technical Manpower:


Skilled workers and technicians play a key role in all sectors of the economy. To produce
skilled technicians there are mid-level technical and vocational training systems in the
country. Mid level technical education is provided after tenth year of schooling.
Polytechnic sub-system offers well organized 3 year's diploma courses in engineering and
technology. There are twenty one Polytechnic Institutes in the country with annual intake
capacity of 5268 students. Besides Polytechnics, there are a number of agricultural and
allied industrial, textile and leather technology institutes and commercial institutes and
other specialized polytechnic institutes offering diploma level course in their respective
fields.

There is an Islamic Institute of Technology IIT (formerly Islamic Center for Technical &
Vocational Training & Research, ICTVTR), a subsidiary organ of the Organization of the
Islamic Conference (OIC). The Center has been mandated to help develop the vast
human resources of the member states and provide technical training of international
standard needed for the industrial, economic and social development of Muslim Ummah
through offering of long regular courses in engineering and technologies and trades and
organizing short and special knowledge and skill updating courses along with
technological and industrial research and research in the field of human resources
development with particular emphasis on technical and vocational education. In IIT a
great variety of academic and training programs are offered starting from the lowest trade
Level to the highest Post Graduate Diploma and Master's Degree in Technical Education
encompassing Certificates and Diploma in Vocational Education, Diploma a B.Sc. in
Technical Education, Higher Diploma and B.Sc. Engineering Degree in Electrical and
Electronic and Mechanical Engineering with various specialization in different rare
technologist, such as Computer Science and Technology, Power System, CAD/CAM,
Energy, Production and instrumentation Engineering.

There are 51 Vocational Training Institutes (VTI's) and 13 Technical Training Centers
(IIC's) and 1 Bangladesh Institute of Marine Technology (BIMT) which cater to the
training needs for craftsmen in the basic trades. Diploma in Marine Technology is also
offered from BIMT. The Marine Academy at Juldia, Chittagong turn out certificated
officers for merchant navy. 13 TTC's and 1 BIMT produce annually about 7,000 highly
skilled technicians on different trades, suitable for overseas employment. Tele
Communication Engineers and Technicians tradesmen skilled in basic engineering and
building trades like electricians, petrol/diesel mechanics, air conditioning mechanics,
radio/TV mechanics, fabricators, marine mechanist, molders, tatters, plumbers, pipe

37
fitters, painters, steel fixtures, carpenters, masons, garments workers, draftsmen, etc. are
available for employment. Testing facilities on different occupations are available in the
modern Technical Training Centers both in public & sectors.
(B) Medical Manpower:
Bangladesh has facilities for imparting graduate and post-graduate medical education and
training in the country. Facilities exist in the country for turning out 2500 medical
graduates and 200 dental surgeons every year. More than 5000 General Physicians
(graduates) are now available for employment abroad. A good number of specialized
consultants/ physicians are also available for overseas employment. Facilities to train
Blood Bank Technicians, Radio Therapist, x-ray technicians, Radiographers, compound,
Dressers, Dental Technicians, Health Assistant, Sanitary Inspectors, etc. also exist in the
country. Bangladesh has about 47000 paramedics and medical personnel available for
employment at home and abroad. There are also 38 Nursing Training Institutes which
offer 4 years Diploma course (including one year Midwifery) in other countries with
excellent professional reputation. At present 8500 Diploma and 800 Graduate nurses are
available for foreign employment.

(C) Engineering Manpower:


Engineering Institutes (2 University of Engineering & Technology, 4 Bangladesh
Institute of Technology, 4 Engineering College and 1 Marine Academy) produce about
1000 Graduate Engineers annually. In addition 21 Polytechnic Institutes in the country
produce about 3000 Diploma Engineers annually. At Present about 1000 Engineers and
25000 Technicians are available for employment at home and abroad.

(D) Industrial Manpower:


The country's industries employ about 1.5 million workers of different categories.
Professional, managerial, administrative, technical, skilled, semi-skilled and unskilled
workers including experienced garments workers, both male and female with several
years of experience in different industrial fields are available for overseas employment.

(E) Computer Personnel:


Bangladesh has now a large number of Computer Operators, Computer Engineers (both
Hardware and Software), Programmers, Web Page Developer, Networking Specialist,
System Analyst, etc. available for overseas employment.

(F) Power Station, Petroleum and Fertilizer Manpower:


Bangladesh has vast reservoir of professional, highly skilled and skilled manpower in
electricity/power, petroleum and fertilizer sectors.

(G) Road Transport Workers:


Professional, technical and skilled personnel experienced in operation, repair and
maintenance of all categories of vehicles including trucks and heavy vehicle equipment's
are available for employment.

(H) Manpower for Financial Institutions, Insurance, Audit and Accounts:

38
Bangladesh has a network of commercial Bank and Financial Institutions covering even
the remotest areas of the country. Persons experienced in central banking operations are
also available in Bangladesh. Normally University Graduates are recruited for
supervisory and managerial positions in the banking institutions and they are trained
through a scheme for training for bankers. In addition, the Bangladesh Institute of Bank
Management provides higher training of international standard to in-service banking
personnel. Similarly, Chartered Accountants Cost Management Accounts, Actuaries, and
persons with long experience in Insurance business, Government and Commercial Audit
and Accounting are available in the Country, and they can be spared for service abroad.

(I) Port and Water Transport Workers:


Personas of all categories needed for administration and operation of port facilities are
available. These include inland Masters, Engine Drivers, Oil Men, Pre-sea Trained
Nautical Cadres, Stevedores, Tally Clears, Crane Operators, Fort Lift Operators, Riggers,
Security Personnel, Management Personnel and other categories of Personnel. They have
international level of efficiency to the credit.

(J)Agriculture, Animal Husbandry, Fisheries, Livestock, Horticulture, Technical


Experts and Farmers:
There are two Agricultural Universities and 10 Agricultural College and several training
institutes in the country offering degrees, diplomas and certificates of education and
training in agriculture, animal husbandry, forestry, fisheries, livestock, horticulture and
related fields. Experts with Bachelor's Master's and Ph.D. degrees and technicians with
several years' experience in agricultural development, livestock, fisheries, forestry
horticulture development and research activities are available in the country, in addition
skilled, semi-skilled and unskilled shepherds with sufficient experience are also available
for foreign employment.

(K) Hotel Management and Catering Staff:


A large number of Bangladeshi hotel personnel are working in various reputed hotels
abroad, mainly in the Middle Eastern countries. The Hotel Management Training
Institute run by Bangladesh Tourism Corporation turns out a good number of trained
hotel personnel every year. All categories of trained hotel staff experience or working in
five star hotels can be provided for the departments of food and beverage, house keeping,
front office, accounts and engineering.

(L)Marine Crew:
Bangladesh has a large number of qualified and experienced Ship/Cargo/Vessel Crew
possessing Continuous Discharge Certificates (C.D.C.) Crew can be provided from
Bangladesh at short notice. Certificated merchant navy officers are also available for
overseas employment.

(M) Miscellaneous Manpower:


Qualified photographers, printers, printing technicians, journalists, translators, musical
entertainers, operators, tailors, sewing men, barbers, shoe makers, domestic servants,
house keepers, cleaners and all types of semi skilled an unskilled workers are available

39
for employment abroad. Besides, Bangladesh has a huge numbers of manual workers to
do heavy and difficult jobs like agricultural work, plantation, timber extraction, pottering
and excavation work, etc.

 EXPORT PROCESSING ZONE

In order to stimulate rapid economic growth of the country, particularly through


industrialization, the government has adopted an 'Open Door Policy' to attract foreign
investment to Bangladesh. The Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority (BEPZA)
is the official organ of the government to promote, attract and facilitate foreign
investment in the Export Processing Zones. The objectives of EPZ are to provide special
areas where potential investors would find a congenial investment climate, free from
cumbersome procedures.

Investment

Eligible Investors:
 Type-A: 100% foreign owned including Bangladesh nationals ordinarily
resident abroad
 Type-B: Joint venture between foreign and Bangladesh entrepreneurs resident
in Bangladesh
 Type-C: 100% Bangladesh entrepreneurs resident in Bangladesh

Mode of Investment:
 Investment in convertible foreign currencies by foreign investors.
 Option to establish public/private Ltd companies or sole
proprietorship/partnership concerns.

Investment Guarantee:
 Foreign Private Investment (Promotion and Projection) Act 1980
 Overseas Private Investment Corporation, USA (OPIC)
 Multi-national Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA)
 International Center for the Settlement of Investment Dispute (ICSID)

Service:
One Window Same Day Service and Simplified Procedure
 Sanctions projects generally within one week
 Issues required Import/Export Permits
 Issues required Work Permits for foreign nationals working in EPZ enterprises
 Provides required infrastructure facilities in EPZ
 Offers 'One Window Same Day Service' to investors in EPZ

Labor

Production Oriented Labor Laws:

40
 Law forbids formation of any labor union in EPZ
 BEPZA is vested with responsibility to administer labor matters for all
enterprises in EPZ

Minimum Wages (Monthly):


• Apprentices/Trainee: US$ 22.00
• Unskilled: US$ 22.00
• Semi-skilled: US$ 22.00
• Skilled: US$ 22.00
• Other benefits include Conveyance Allowance, House Rent, Medical Allowance
and Festival Bonus

Working Hours:
• In Factory: 48 hours in a week (5 working days)
• In Office: 40 hours in a week (5 working days)

Employees leave:
• Casual Leave: 10 days
• Annual Leave: 17 days

Brief information on the EPZs of Bangladesh:

 Chittagong Export Processing Zone (EPZ-CTG)

Location: South Halishahar, Chittagong


2.40 kms from Chittagong Sea Port
5.63 kms from the main business center of
Chittagong
7.24 kms from the Chittagong International Airport

Area: 183.37 hectares (453 acres)

Plots: Number of Industrial Plots: 428


Size of each port: 2000 m2
Tariff: US $ 2.00 /m2 /year

Standard Factory Building: Space: 56368.34 m2


Tariff: US $ 2.50/m2/month

Warehouse: Space: 2251 m2


Tariff: US $ 2.50 / m2 / month.

Utility Services: Water Supply: From Chittagong WASA.


Storage Capacity: 7.26 million liters / day.

41
Tariff: Tk. 17.71 / cm.
Gas Supply: From Bakhrabad Gas System Ltd.
Tariff Tk. 5.43 / cm.
Power Supply: 11 kv, 3 phase, 50 cycles / sec.
Tariffs: 3.98 / kWh.

 Dhaka Export Processing Zone (EPZ-DAK)

Location: Savar, Dhaka. 35 kms from Dhaka city centre


25 kms from Zia International Airport

Area: 143.84 hectares (355.34 acres)

Plots: Number of industrial plots: 372


Size of each plot: 2000 m2
Tariff: US $ 2.00 / m2 /year

Standard Factory Building: Space: 76000 m2


Tariff: US $ 2.50 /m2 /month

Warehouse: Space: 2356 m2


Tariff: US $ 2.50 /m2 /month

Utility Services Water Supply: Own water supply system


Tariff: Tk. 17.71 / cm
Gas Supply: From Titas Gas Field
Tariff Tk. 5.43 / cm
Power Supply: 11 kv, 3 phase, 50 cycles / sec
Tariff: Tk. 4.18 / kWh

 Mongla Export Processing Zone (EPZ-MON)

Location: Mongla port area, Bagerhat


105 kms from Jessore Airport and
350 kms from Chittagong port

Area: 186.21 hectares (460 acres)

Plots: Number of industrial plots: 162 (first phase)


Size of each plot: 2000 m2
Tariff: US $ 1.00 / m2 / year

Standard Factory Building: Space: 18000 m2


Tariff: US $ 1.25 / m2 / month

42
Utility Services: Water Supply: Sweet water from Public Health
Engineering Department and own supply network
Tariff: Tk. 17.71 / cm
Gas Supply: From Shahbajpur Gas Field (proposed)
Tariff: Tk. 5.43 / cm
Power Supply: 11 kV, 3 phases, 50 cycles/sec
Tariff: Tk. 4.18 / kWh
 Ishwardi Export Processing Zone (EPZ-ISD)

Location: Pakshl, Pabna


10.6 kms from Ishwardi Airport
150 kms from Jamuna Bridge
285 kms form Dhaka
250 kms from Mongla port
110 kms from Rajshahi Airport
And 560 kms from Chittagong port

Area: 125.07 hectares (308.97 acres)

Plots: Number of industrial plots: 166 (first phase)


Size of each plot: 2000 m2
Tariff: US $ 1.00 / m2 / year

Standard Factory Building: Space: 18000 m2


Tariff: US $ 1.25 / m2 / month

Utility Services: Water Supply: Own supply network.


Tariff: Tk. 17.71 / cm.
Gas Supply: From Gas Transmission Company Ltd.
(Western Zone Project, Proposed)
Tariff: Tk. 5.43 / cm
Power Supply: 11 kV, 3 phase, 50 cycles / sec
Tariff: Tk. 4.18 / kWh

 Comilla Export Processing Zone (EPZ-COM)

Location: Comilla old Airport area


170 kms from Chittagong port
97 kms from Dhaka
Area: 108.26 hectares (267.46 acres)
Plots: Number of industrial plots: 208 (first phase)
Size of each plot: 2000 m2
Tariff: US $ 2.00 / m2 / year

Standard Factory Building: Space: 27000 m2


Tariff: US $ 2.50 / m2 /month

43
Utility Services: Water Supply: Own water supply system
Tariff: Tk. 17.71 / cm
Gas Supply: From Bakhrabad Gas system Ltd
Tariff: Tk. 5.43 / cm
Power Supply: 11 kv, 3 phase, 50 cycles / sec
Tariff: Tk. 4.18 / kWh

 Uttara Export Processing Zone (EPZ-UTR)

Location: Shongalshi, Nilphamari


18 kms from Syedpur Airport
360 kms from Dhaka
460 kms from Chittagong Port

Area: 107.18 hectares (264.99 acres)

Plots: Number of industrial plots: 221 (first phase)


Size of each plot: 2000 m2
Tariff: US $ 1.00 / m2 / year

Standard Factory Building: Space: 18000 m2


Tariff: US $ 1.25 /m2 /month

Utility Services: Water Supply: Own water supply system.


Tariff: Tk. 17.71 / cm.
Gas Supply: From Gas Transmission Company Ltd.
(Western Zone Project, Proposed)
Tariff: Tk. 5.43 / cm
Power Supply: 11 kV, 3 phase, 50 cycles / sec
Tariff: Tk. 4.18 / kWh

44
 URGE FOR DEMOCRACY

The people of the sovereign always support the elected system which refers the
parliamentary system and democracy. The people of Bangladesh always prefer and
expect the democratic government which should come into power with due process of
constitution after holding a credible election as per the constitutional mandate not in any
other way.

The political climate of the country has been changing from the independence of
Bangladesh. It got the independence from Pakistan in 1971 to protect and preserve the
rights and freedom of its population which was on threat in Pakistan regime. In 1974 it
becomes the member of United Nations and from that it is committed to uphold the
UDHR and secure the rights of its citizens. The country has a long history of military rule
in various unexpected occasions but all these evident strongly proved strong desire of the
citizens towards democratic process with due course of law. But the people of the
sovereign always support the elected system which refers the parliamentary system and
democracy. The people of Bangladesh always prefer and expect the democratic
government which should come into power with due process of constitution after holding
a credible election as per the constitutional mandate not in any other way. All classes of
citizens desire that they should be governed by a government, which shall come with a
general election and with the popularity of majority voters of Bangladesh, and they never
expect any kinds of autonomous or non-elected authority in the name of Government.

The people should demonstrate for securing the constitution and the sovereignty as well
as the interest of citizens with the help of a positive response of international
communities.

 URGE FOR DEVELOPMENT

On many counts, Bangladesh’s performance has been better than the initial anticipations
after the country’s political independence. The predominant theme at the time was one of
negative images. The account of progress achieved by the country, however, shows rapid
improvements in many indicators.

First, Bangladesh has achieved impressive success in the area of population control. Total
fertility rate (TFR) declined from 6.3 in 1975 to 3.3 in 1997-99. Accordingly, the
population growth rate has come down from 2.9 per cent per annum in the mid-seventies
to 1.5 per cent in the late-nineties. The remarkable feature of this rapid decline was that it
had been achieved not only at a low level of income but also at a low level of literacy.

Second, mortality is often considered as the criterion for judging economic success and
failure of nations. Bangladesh has displayed considerable success in this respect,
especially in reducing infant and child mortality. The infant mortality rate also declined
from 153 deaths per thousand live births in 1975 to 94 deaths in 1990, dropping further to

45
66 in 2000. The pace of progress in infant and under-five mortality reduction during the
nineties was among the fastest in the developing world.

Third, Bangladesh witnessed significant success in disaster preparedness and in


overcoming the phenomena of mass starvation and the threat of famine syndrome in the
backdrop of endemic vulnerability to natural disasters. At the aggregate level, the country
has achieved the desirable objective of near self-sufficiency in rice production with a
declining cultivated area. The production of cereals increased at a trend growth rate of 2.4
per cent per year between the early eighties and the late nineties. This was mainly
achieved through the expansion of rice areas under high-yielding varieties (HYVs).

Fourth, Bangladesh has made impressive gains in reducing child malnutrition rates during
the last 15 years. According to Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) data, the rate of
stunting for children in the age group of 6-71 months which was 69 per cent in 1985/86
dropped to 49 per cent in 2000. The proportion of underweight children has gone down
from 72 per cent in 1985/86 to 51 per cent in 2000. The Demographic and Health Survey
(DHS) data available for the second half of the nineties show a faster decline. The rate of
stunting for the age group of 0-59 months has gone down from 55 to 45 per cent during
1996-2000 and, that for underweight, from 56 to 48 per cent during the same period.

Fifth, Bangladesh has achieved considerable success in mainstreaming women into the
development process. Bangladeshi women have played an important role in the success
of micro-credit, ready-made garment exports, reducing population growth, increasing
child nutrition, and in the spread of primary education. The country has achieved gender
parity in primary education and nearly removed gender gap in secondary education.

Sixth, low-income countries are typically marked not only by ‘weak’ state, but also weak
civic and grass-roots movements and activism. Bangladesh was an instructive outlier in
this regard. The advances made by the NGOs and CSOs as alternative delivery
mechanisms as well as vocal civic institutions have played a significant role in the
reversal of fortunes. The emergence of these actors played a partially compensatory role
in the backdrop of weak state and market institutions. Social entrepreneurialism through
catalyzing the developmental roles of the organizations of the poor such as community
based organizations (CBOs) and organizations for the poor (NGOs and CSOs) has been
an important strategic element in the poverty reduction strategy. These social enterprises
will continue to play an important role in developing a pro-poor development agenda in
Bangladesh.

Seventh, Bangladesh has achieved significant progress towards a viable democratic


transition. Ensuring free and fair elections through non-partisan caretaker government has
been a noteworthy political innovation in the backdrop of weak democratic institutions in
the country. There have also been important gains in terms of increased political and
electoral participation of women, enhanced press freedom, and increasingly active civic
movements. Although the process of democratization is yet to take deeper roots, the
success achieved so far was not inconsequential prompting many observers to term
Bangladesh’s experience as a role model of “moderate Muslim democracy”.

46
 EXISTENCE OF INDUSTRIAL BASE AT THE TIME OF
LIBERATION

After the partition of Bengal in 1947, East Pakistan inherited a very small share of the
industries of Bengal. East Pakistan got none of the 108 jute mills, 18 iron and steel mills
and 16 paper mills of Bengal. Only 90 of Bengal's 389 cotton mills, 10 of its 166 sugar
mills, and 3 of its 19 cement factories fell in the territory of East Pakistan. The cement
factory at chhatak (sylhet) had to depend upon limestone supplied from Assam (India).
The cotton mills of East Pakistan also had to depend upon imported raw materials. The
1951 Census revealed that East Pakistan had 63,234 unskilled non-agricultural laborers,
115,480 skilled laborers engaged in manufacturing sector, 184,535 mining and quarry
workers and 121,522 professional persons. The manufacturing sector (comprising mainly
the food, drink and tobacco processing units) employed a total of 602,875 persons (4.67%
of the total labor force), of whom 430,148 were involved directly in production processes
and 172,727 in subsidiary activities. There were a total of 360,603 cottage enterprises,
which employed 949,074 persons. Of the manufacturing units, only about 200 enterprises
used power.

The industrial development policy of the government of Pakistan encouraged the


manufacture of arms and ammunition, hydroelectric power, railway wagons, and
telephone, telegraph and wireless reserved for the state and encouraged the private
sectors to come up with industrial ventures in all other sectors. Twenty-four industries
including jute, textiles, silk and rayon were subjected to central planning. The
government created the Pakistan Industrial Development Corporation (PIDC) and
Pakistan Industrial Finance Corporation to promote industrialization. PIDC made
significant contributions in the establishment of industrial units in sectors such as jute,
paperboard, cement, fertilizer, sugar, chemicals, textile, pharmaceuticals, light
engineering and shipbuilding. The central government, however, followed a
discriminatory policy. It favored West Pakistan in industrial development and drained
resources from East Pakistan for the purpose. It also directed most of Pakistan's external
resources to the cause of the industrial development of West Pakistan. Non-Bengalis
dominated the list of entrepreneurs coming up with new industrial ventures in East
Pakistan.

Despite all these impositions, however, some progress was made in industrialization in
East Pakistan during the period between 1950 and 1970. The number of industrial
enterprises in East Pakistan in different sectors in 1970 were: food manufacturing - 408,
beverage - 6, tobacco processing - 26, textile - 792, footwear - 204, wood and cork - 14,
furniture - 70, paper products - 33, printing and publishing - 14, chemical products - 572,
petroleum and coal products - 3, rubber products - 3, mineral products - 53, basic metal -
35, metal products - 257, non electric machinery - 88, electrical machinery - 34, transport
equipment - 65 and other goods - 166. Official sources of the government, however,
recorded that in 1970, there were 1,580 manufacturing units in East Pakistan that
employed 206,058 persons. Their gross output was valued at Tk 3.636 billion and the
value added amounted to Tk 1,708 billion. The share of the manufacturing sector in the
GDP was 8.9% in 1970 as compared to 3.9% in 1950.

47
 READYMADE GARMENTS SECTOR OF BANGLADESH

The RMG business started in Bangladesh in the 70s but it was then merely a casual
effort. The first consignment of knitwear export was made in 1973 and the first
consignment of woven garments was made in 1977. Though started later, but it was the
woven sector that first dint a spot in the export pie of Bangladesh. In 1981-82 the
contribution of woven garments in the total export was 1.10%. Afterwards it is a story of
sustained success for the Bangladesh RMG sector. Within a decade the contribution of
woven to the export basket became 42.83% (1990-91) and the knitwear sector's
contribution was 7.64% (1990-91).

The entrepreneurs of the knit sector stepped forward with their expertise in the late 80's.
With their earnest efforts they were able to export US$ 14.84 million in 1989-90. Out of
this US$ 12.22 million was exported to EU and US$ 2.02 million was exported to US.
The trend continued in the knit sector because of the market access opportunity provided
to the LDCs under the Generalized Systems of Preference (GSP) benefit.

This is the rejuvenated beginning of the epic story of Bangladeshi knitwear sector RMG
sector that in true sense has been able to massive industrialization in a sustainable way
with effect on all probable human development aspects which is the encouraging part of
the story.

The growth of knitwear sector is increasing at an increasing rate. The cumulative average
growth rate of the sector is 27%. And it is continuously grabbing a more portion in the
export pie of Bangladesh. This is mainly attributed to the facilities provided under the EC

48
GSP and ROO. The knitwear sector is heavily driven by these favorable policies and took
the opportunity to develop a strong backward linkage for the sector.

Comparative Statistics of Knitwear and Woven Wear (Volume in Million US $):


Year Knitwear Woven Wear Total Export
Volume (%) Share% Volume (%) Share% RMG Bangladesh
Change in BD Change in BD
Export Export
89-90 14.84 0 0.77 609.32 29.34 31.67 624.16 1923.70
90-91 131.20 784.00 7.64 735.62 20.73 42.83 866.82 1717.55
91-92 118.57 -9.62 5.95 1064.00 44.64 53.36 1182.57 1993.90
92-93 204.55 72.51 8.58 1240.48 16.59 52.06 1445.03 2382.89
93-94 264.14 29.13 10.42 1291.64 4.12 50.97 1555.78 2533.90
94-95 393.26 48.88 11.32 1835.09 42.07 52.85 2228.35 3472.56
95-96 598.32 52.14 15.41 1948.81 6.20 50.20 2547.13 3882.42
96-97 763.30 27.57 17.28 2237.95 14.84 50.65 3001.25 4418.28
97-98 940.31 23.19 18.22 2843.33 27.05 55.09 3783.64 5161.20
98-99 1035.36 10.11 19.49 1984.81 4.98 56.18 4020.17 5312.86
99-00 1269.83 22.64 22.08 3082.56 3.27 53.59 4352.39 5752.20
00-01 1496.23 17.83 23.14 3364.20 9.14 52.20 4583.80 6467.30
01-02 1459.24 -2.48 24.38 3124.56 -7.12 52.20 4583.80 5986.09
02-03 1653.83 13.34 25.26 3258.27 4.28 49.76 4912.10 6548.44
03-04 2148.02 29.88 28.25 3538.07 8.59 46.54 5686.09 7602.99
04-05 2819.47 31.26 32.58 3598.20 1.70 41.58 6417.67 8654.52
05-06 3816.98 35.38 36.26 4083.32 13.50 38.78 7900.80 10526.16
06-07 4553.60 19.30 37.39 4657.63 14.05 38.25 9211.23 12177.86

European Union is the main export region of Bangladeshi Knitwear constituting 79%
(US$ 2227.27 million) of total knitwear export in FY 2003-2004 followed by USA
(14.27%, i.e. US$ 402.38 million). This has become possible because it can satisfy the
ROO of EU as value addition is higher (75%) in this sector. After the adoption of the
guidelines for the application of the scheme of generalized tariff preferences by EC
knitwear export from Bangladesh to EU rose precipitously. The two-stage transformation
requirement of ROO in 1999 boosted market penetration in EU further; it contributed a
growth of 101.19% since 2000-2001. Bangladesh RMG sector has successfully passed
some critical tests and is now sailing with two masts: knit and woven. The sub-sectors are
now in healthy competition among themselves to take the role of leadership within the
country.
In Financial Year 2003-04, knitwear for the first time exceeded woven wear and became
the leader in terms of quantity exported with 91.6 million dozens. The amount of woven
export was 90.49 million dozens. Knitwear is still leading in terms of quantity exported

49
and is widening the gap day by day. The present difference in favor of knitwear is 56.21
million dozens. In FY 2003-04, the contribution of two RMG sub-sectors in national
export were as follows: Woven Garments 46.54% and Knitwear 28.25%. In FY 2004-05
the figures have changed dramatically, the share of woven garment to the country's export
has reduced to 41.58%, on the other hand the share of knitwear has increased to 32.58%.
It indicates clearly that the knitwear is performing well in both ways. In Financial Year
2005-06 the scenario is as under:

Knitwear export increased by US$ 997.51 Million (35.38%)


National export increased by US$ 1871.64 Million (21.63%)

Therefore the contribution of knitwear in national export increase is 53.30%

Export of RMG in FY 2007-08 & 2008-09 (in Million USD):


Export of RMG in Financial Year 2007-08 &2008-09
Year Month Woven Knit Total
July 345.20 346.74 691.94
August 417.02 445.05 862.07
September 353.78 412.46 766.24
2007
October 314.66 387.32 701.98
November 417.14 442.06 859.20
December 471.11 516.57 987.64
January 492.36 464.40 956.76
February 477.96 455.05 933.01
March 481.00 443.98 924.98
2008
April 415.27 479.08 894.35
May 441.65 536.38 978.03
June 540.13 603.43 1143.56
Total (July2007-June2008) 5167.28 5532.52 10699.80
Share in National Export 36.62% 39.21% 75.83%
Year Month Woven Knit Total
July 547.30 640.50 1187.8
August 485.90 569.64 1055.54
2008 September 492.08 620.94 1113.02
October 292.22 357.04 649.26
Total (2008-2009) 1817.5 2188.12 4005.64
Share in National Export 34.61% 41.67% 77.26%
Export Performance of RMG over Government's Strategic Export Target for 2008-
09 (July-August):
Product Target (In Million USD) % Change Of Export Performance
2008-2009 (July-August) Over Strategic Export Target

50
Knitwear 1128.45 +7.24%
Woven 974.24 +6.05%

Yearly Export (FY* 2007-08): US$ 5532.52 million (Largest)

EU: US$ 4216.57 Million


USA: US$ 807.28 Million
Canada: US$ 232.40 Million
Others: US$ 276.27 Million

Share in National Export: 39.21%


Share in RMG Export: 51.70%
Yearly Growth: 21.5%
Contribution in National Export Increase: 50.67%
Net Retention amount: US$ 3319.56 million
Net retention rate: 60% (Highest)
Value addition: 75% (Highest)
Quantity Exported: 215.72 million dozens (11 Months)

Labor Force Employed: Direct - 1.00 million; about 70% of


them are women.
Indirect - 0.50 million

Number of Member Units about: 1500 (2008)

51
 NATURAL RESOURCES OF BANGLADESH

An overview of land, water, and natural resources of Bangladesh:

Every one is entitled to natural resources. Human rights from human centric perspective
enshrine every one’s access to natural resources. Corporate globalization leads to unjust
and undemocratic socio-economic order where the poor and marginalized are loosing
power and at the same time are lacking access to natural resources. People do not have
decision making power over resources due to lack of enabling environment. As a result,
poverty situation is worsening. Corporate powers manipulate globalization for their own
profit. These powers own the maximum proportion of world’s resources. Scenario is
same in the context of Bangladesh.

Natural resources are the common resources where every one should have equal access.
Due to the unequal social structure rich people usually control the resources and poor are
deprived off. Thus, poor is not poor by predetermined fate but they are poor because of
lack of access to natural resources.

The policies in regard to the natural resources are framed through bureaucratic process
and often follow the doctrines of colonial land policies that serve the benefit of the rich
and powerful. As the poor have no access, the policies rule over the poor and their access
by default are ignored.

Over exploitation of resources create climate hazard where people become the victims in
the hand of corporate. Natural resources should not be used for profit only. Resource
justice is an important aspect, which ensures rights and justice. Claiming rights over
natural resources makes poor enabled to earn their livelihoods.

1. LAND RESOURCES

Most of Bangladesh lies within the broad delta formed by the Ganges and Brahmaputra
rivers and is exceedingly flat, low-lying, and subject to annual flooding. Much fertile,
alluvial soil is deposited by the floodwaters. The only significant area of hilly terrain,
constituting less than one-tenth of the nation's territory, is the Chittagong Hill Tracts
District in the narrow southeastern panhandle of the country. There, on the border with
Myanmar, is Mowdok Mual (1,003 m/3,291 ft), the country's highest peak. Small,
scattered hills lie along or near the eastern and northern borders with India. The eroded
remnants of two old alluvial terraces-the Madhupur Tract, in the north central part of the
country, and The Barind, straddling the northwestern boundary with India-attain
elevations of about 30 m (about 100 ft). The soil here is much less fertile than the
annually replenished alluvium of the surrounding floodplain.

52
Land:
Total area: 144,000 square kilometers;
Land area: 133,910 square kilometers
Land boundaries: 4,246 km total; 193 km with Myanmar, 4,053 km with India,
Coastline: 580 km.

Land distribution:
· Arable land 67%
· Forest and woodland 16%
· Permanent crops 2%
· Meadows and pastures 4%
· Others 11%

Unjust Land Resources:

The total Geographical area of Bangladesh is about 56,000 square miles. (143,998 square
kilometer) Out of which about 9 million hectares are cultivable land. A government
survey finds that total cropped land is nearly 14.1 million hectares including single,
double and triple cropping land. It is estimated that the growing population pressure will
use up 50 per cent of the country’s cultivable land by 2025.
Every person working in the agriculture sector now owns only an average of 0.12
hectares of cropland. According to the classification of land, out of the total area, 63 per
cent are being used for cultivation while 4.38 per cent for rural and urban housing and the
rest includes forest & cultivable waste land.

Khas land:

Out of the total amount of identified Khas land of 3.3 million acres, only a tiny portion
has so far been distributed to the poor who face multifaceted difficulties in both obtaining
and retaining land. Most Khas land, identified or un-identified, are illegally occupied by
the rich segments of the society who are integral part of the power structure.
Out of this 3.3 million acres 0.8 million acres are agricultural land, 1.7 million acres are
non-agricultural land and 0.8 million acres are water-bodies.

Adivasi land:

Indigenous peoples from eleven different ethno-linguistic groups have been living in the
region for many centuries. Chittagong Hill Tract is mostly occupied by different tribal
communities. Some other indigenous communities are living across the country.
Agriculture remains the main form of livelihood for CHT residents. Rice, with an
agricultural yield of 0.90 Mt, is grown on 43.3% of the total cultivated land (0.19 M ha).
A variety of fruits are grown with success, such as banana, pineapple, and jackfruit
(Ullah 2002). The CHT has an area of 13,180 km, making up approximately 10% of the
total area of Bangladesh. Compared to the low-lying floodplains that characterize most of
Bangladesh, the topography of the CHT is quite steep, with over 70% of the land at a
slope greater than 40%. The soils are characterized by low fertility. Kyokra-Dong, the

53
highest peak of Bangladesh (1,230 meter) is located in the southern tip of the Rangamati
district, near the borders of India and Myanmar. The largest river in the CHT, the
Karnaphuli River, was dammed in 1962 for development of hydroelectric power,
flooding an area of about 68,000 ha, to become what is today Kaptai Lake. The
Karnaphuli, Feni, Chengi, Maini, Kassalong, Sangu and Matamuhuri Rivers carve the six
main valleys in the CHT.

Poor people’s access:

According to government report 57% people of Bangladesh are landless poor & they live
below poverty level. But Non-Government sources say that the number of landless
people in Bangladesh is more than 68%. They live in perpetual poverty, hunger, disease
and deprivation. The percentage of landless poor has been increasing for last couple of
decades.

1947: 14.3%
1970: 19.8%
1975: 32%
1984: 46%
2001: 68.8%

Land occupy by the rich:

22% of the rich & middle farmers of rural areas of Bangladesh own 71% of the total land
& receive 31% institutional credit.

Land occupied in Dhaka:

About 15% of the land in Dhaka is owned by 2% of the upper class elite of this
metropolis, 28% middle class families own 65% of the residential areas and 70% poor
families own only 20% of the residential areas. Most of the lands owned by the poor
families are of poor quality in the outskirts & depressed areas.

Landless labor:

As a result 69% of our people are landless, laborers, workers, slum dwellers and are
forced to live in perpetual poverty, hunger, malnutrition & deprivation. The increasing
population in the country is increasingly demanding natural resources for their survival.
As Lewis Smith notes, each person needs 21.9 hectares of the Earth’s surface to supply
their needs whereas, it was calculated, the Earth’s biological capacity is 15.7 hectares per
person. Bangladesh is densely most populated country in the world. Therefore, this
calculation could remind us how our country is dangerously exploiting natural resources.

Densely populated country faces serious problem of control and conflict over resources.
Lands are occupied by commercial establishment, road network, urban development,
forestry, fishing etc. rest of the land utilized for crop production and homesteads.

54
Bangladesh is a country of about 143,999 sq. km including inland and estuarine water
surfaces. Over 58% people are functionally landless in Bangladesh. About 17.8 million
acres are cultivated land and average household farm (those who have farm land) size is
1.5 acre.

Over utilization of land reduces fertility of land for meeting increasing demand of food.
In addition, utilization of chemical fertilizer and pesticides hampers fertility besides
polluting water and creating health hazards. Thus, eco-system is also hampered by the
excessive utilization of land. The increasing demand for urbanization motivates
unplanned infrastructural development at rural areas. River bank erosion and salutation
are other cases for land degradation. Natural and man made both causes are involved in
this process. A study found symptoms of land degradation such as Depletion of organic
matter, Nutrient deficiency, Acidification, Salinization, Soil compaction, Plough pan
formation, Overgrazing, Deforestation of hilly land, shifting cultivation without adequate
fallow periods, Water logging, and Accelerated erosion.

2. WATER RESOURCES

Unjust Water Resources:

Water bodies: Inland water bodies: rivers and estuaries 1031563 ha., Beels 114161 ha.,
Kaptai Lake 68800 ha., Flood lands 2832792 ha., Ponds 230000 ha., Baors 5488 ha.,
Shrimp farms 141353 ha.[viii]

There are two aspects of surface and ground water: i) availability and ii) quality. The
availability depends on monsoon climate, upstream flow, and consumption. Quality of
surface water is deteriorated by chemicals, pesticides, and pollutants from factories.
Water crisis occurs due to low rain fall, densely population, and agricultural, industrial,
and urban needs. In one hand, there is scarcity of water during dry season. On the other
hand, overflow of water is observed during monsoon. These two extreme situations create
livelihood crisis and sufferings to the poor people. In addition, saline water from sea
invades inland areas and degrades quality of surface and ground water as well as decrease
fertility and increase salinity of soil.

The ground water level has been downing at Rajshahi and Bogura District for last 15
years. Many hand and machine driven tube wells are malfunctioning due to this problem.
Experts say, if this continues, water shortage and even land slide could occur in the
coming time (The Somokal, 04.05.07, p 12). We have used excessive ground water and
have not found other alternatives of that, which caused today’s crisis. Scientists say that
due to lack of rain fall and the drying up of river Padma are two important reasons for
ground water crisis in the region. It also indicates the change in ecology and biodiversity
due to manipulation of upstream flow of Padma by the Farakka dam. India had always
been cruel in terms sharing Gangas water and the obvious impact is the dying Padma.

55
Severe water crisis was observed in Dhaka and nearby areas in the recent time, which is
an alarm for city dwellers. Tube wells could not pump out water because the ground
water level has gone down. A research says that, ground water layer under Dhaka city
was lowered around 20 miters during 1996-2003. In 1996, the layer was at 26.6 meters
and in 2003 the layer became 46.6 meter. It is assumed that the water layer is further
lowered at 52 meters. This is not just happening under Dhaka city but also across the
country. Thus, in one hand ground water layer is going down, on the other hand, due to
global warming 67% ice of Himalaya is melting down. Under such as a circumstances
monsoon could be the only source of water in the country but climate change could also
uncertain the monsoon.

Government of Bangladesh has adopted National Water Policy in 1999 with a goal for
proper utilization and conservation of water resources. This policy paper has declared
water as “fundamental human rights”. The policy urges strong participation from citizens
at all levels to ensure right to water. Article 2 (b) stresses on availability of water for poor
and underprivileged community and gives special attention to women and children.

Cholon Beel:

There are many water bodies, which could generate more income. For example, we could
generate Tk. 400 crore from Cholon beel per year. It is possible to produce 2 lac. M.T.
fish through systematic and planned fish culture in this beel. The market price of this fish
is Tk. 200 crore. Some group of people has occupied water bodies and Khas land illegally
and they are united to resist Cholon beel development project. Experts say that if these
lands could be distributed among land less farmers and water bodies among fishing
community, it could improve income and lives of these marginal people. There is also
prospect to develop this beel as Eco Park or eco beel. This is an example of a potential
beel, which is left unplanned. Thus, access to natural resources means that marginal
farmers and fishermen could access to the resources of the beel.

Hakaluki Haor:

There is a world’s biggest haor in Bangladesh name Hakaluki. It is unfortunate and a


good example too that as a nation we can not take care our resources. A group of greedy
people has been systematically destroying the haor for fishing. Bio-diversity in this area
is in danger. Local administration had seized some water pump machines and fishing nets
in the haor area. There are government khas lands around the haor. Due to lack of care
part of the haor areas transformed into khas land. Fish species are wiping out from the
haor due to these overwhelming fishing activities. According to sources, 30- 40 beels
exist out of 300 beels of Hakaluki haor. The rest of beels are filled and transformed into
dry desert.

56
3. FAUNA AND FLORA

Abundance of Bangladesh's bird life makes it an ornithologist's paradise. Of the 525


recorded species, 350 are resident. Among them are bulbul, magpie, robin, common
game birds, cuckoos, hawks, owls, crows, kingfishers, woodpeckers, parrots and myna. A
wide variety of warblers are also found. Some of them are migrants and appear only in
winter. The migratory and seasonal birds are pre-dominantly ducks.

Of the 200 species of mammals, the pride of place goes to the Royal Bengal Tiger of the
Sunderbans, the largest block of littoral forests spreading over an area of 6,000 sq. km.
Next comes the elephants found mainly in the forests of the Chittagong Hill Tracts
districts. South Himalayan black bear and the Malayan bear are also seen here. Six types
of deer are found in the hill tracts and the Sunderbans. Of them the spotted deer, barking
deer and sambar are the most familiar. Clouded leopard, leopard cat, mongoose, jackal
and rhesus monkey are also found. Among the bovine animals, three species- buffalo, ox
and gayal- are found. There are about 150 species of reptiles of which the sea turtle, river
tortoise, mud turtle, crocodiles, gavial, python, krait and cobra and common. About 200
species of marine and freshwater fish are also found. Prawns and lobsters are available in
plenty for local consumption and export.

In the shallow water of the floodplains, ponds and swamps of the country various
hydrophytes and floating ferns grow in abundance. Tall grasses present a picturesque site
near the banks of the rivers and the marshes. Around 60% of the Gangetic plain is under
rice paddy and jute cultivation. The village homes are usually concealed by the lush
green foliage of a wide variety of trees, thickets of bamboo and banana plants. A
characteristic feature of the landscape is the presence of a variety of palm and fruit trees.
Each season produces its special variety of flowers in Bangladesh; among them, the
prolific Water Hyacinth flourishes. Its carpet of thick green leaves and blue flowers gives
the impression that solid ground lies underneath. Other decorative plants, which are
widely spread, are Jasmine, Water Lily, Rose, Hibiscus, Bougainvillea, Magnolia, and an
incredible diversity of wild orchids in the forested areas.

Lying close to the Himalayas, the Sylhet area has extensive natural depressed lands
locally called 'haors' (pronounced 'howers', wetlands). During the winter season they are
home to huge flocks of wild fowl. Outstanding species include the rare Baer's pochard
and Pallas' fishing eagle, along with a great number of ducks and skulkers. Other
important habitats are the remaining fragments of evergreen and teak forests, especially
along the Indian border near the Srimongal area. The blue-bearded bee-eater, red breasted
trogan and a wide variety of forest birds, including rare visitors, are regularly seen in
these forests. One of two important coastal zones is the Noakhali region, with emphasis
on the islands near Hatiya, where migratory species and a variety of wintering waders
find suitable refuge. These include large numbers of the rare spoonbilled sandpiper,
Nordman's greenshank and flocks of Indian skimmers.

57
4. MINERAL RESOURCES

Mineral reserves plus all other deposits that may eventually become available - either
known deposits that are not economically or technologically recoverable at present, or
unknown deposits, rich or lean, that may be inferred to exist but have not yet been
discovered. Geologically, Bangladesh occupies a greater part of the bengal basin and the
country is covered by Tertiary folded sedimentary rocks (12%) in the north, north eastern
and eastern parts; uplifted Pleistocene residuum (8%) in the north western, mid northern
and eastern parts; and Holocene deposits (80%) consisting of unconsolidated sand, silt
and clay. The oldest exposed rock is the Tura Sandstone of Palaeocene age but older
rocks like Mesozoic, Palaeozoic amid Precambrian basement have been encountered in
the drill holes in the north western part of the country.

Because of a different geological environment, important mineral deposits of Bangladesh


are natural gas, coal, limestone, hardrock, gravel, boulder, glass sand, construction sand,
white clay, brick clay, peat, and beach sand heavy minerals. Tertiary Barail shales
occurring within the oil and gas windows have generated natural gas and oil found in
Bangladesh. After generation, gas and oil have migrated upward through multi-kilometre
rock layers above, to reach and accumulate in suitable sandstone reservoirs in the
Neogene Bhuban and Bokabil rock units. Gravel, glass sand, construction sand, peat, and
beach sand are found in the Holocene sediments, and white clay (kaolin) is found in the
late Pleistocene sediments in the small hills mainly in the northern part of the country.
White clay and glass sand deposits have also been discovered in the north-western part
below the surface. Exploitation of the deposits of limestone, construction sand, gravel,
glass sand, white clay and beach sand are done through small scale quarrying. The
subsurface white clay and glass sand deposits have not been mined yet. Developments of
subsurface coal and hardrock mines are going on.

5. COAL

Coal black or blackish mineral substance formed from the compaction of ancient plant
matter in tropical swamp conditions. It is used as a fuel and in the chemical industry. The
principal centres of coal production in India close to the Bangladesh border are the
Bengal-Bihar Coal fields at Jharia, Raniganj, Bokaro and Karanpura. The railways have
been the chief consumers of Indian coal. Coal mining in India was first started at
Raniganj, west bengal in 1774, but its output merely supplied local requirements until the
East Indian Railway entered the field in 1854. By 1903, the Raniganj field accounted for
about 41.2% of the total coal production in India. Similarly, the production of the Jharia
field in 1894, following the laying of a branch line connecting it with the East Indian
Railway system, was 14,818 tons. Then the production rapidly increased, and in 1903 the
output of Jharia represented one-third of the total coal production of India. The coalfields
in various parts of assam are, however, associated with the rocks of the Tertiary age.

In Bangladesh four major subsurface coalfields are discovered. From 1857 to 1957 a
number of geologists expressed with the hope that under the green cropped land in
Bangladesh, coal mines which would surpass this significance of those in Raniganj would

58
be found. In spite of this East Pakistan was neglected for the exploration works for
mineral resources. But the hopes of the geologists were vindicated when in course of
searching for oil in 1959 STANVAC drilled a hole in Kuchma X-1 in Bogra district,
where Gondwana coal was encountered at a depth of 2381m from surface. It was decided
to abandon the well earlier but later STANVAC continued drilling and as a result the coal
was discovered. Thick Eocene limestone bed was also encountered in the hole. This
discovery was an eye-opener to the possibility of finding mineral resources in mineable
depth. Consequently in 1961 under the UN-Pak Mineral Survey Project the Geological
Survey of Pakistan (GSP) carried out detailed geological, geophysical and drilling
operations in the districts of Bogra and Rajshahi and found coal resources of about 1,050
million tons in the Jamalganj-Paharpur coal fields and a huge quantity of Eocene
limestone in the area.

In 1972, geological survey of bangladesh (GSB) was established. It undertook a project


(1981-1990) with the financial assistance of the Asian Development Bank under the title
"Accelerated Exploration for Mineral Resources and Modernisation of the Geological
Survey of Bangladesh". The Project was successfully implemented. Under this project the
Geological Survey of Bangladesh discovered Permian Gondwana coal at Barapukuria of
Dinajpur district in 1985, Khalaspir of Rangpur district in 1989 and Dighipara of
Dinajpur district in 1995. In the Barapukuria coal basin, GSB completed seven drill holes
during the years 1985-87. GSB also calculated the reserves, thickness and extent of the
coal. Later on another 25 holes were drilled by Chinese and British company to know the
details of the extent, reserves, thickness, seam condition, overburden characteristics and
hydrogeological conditions. In the Khalaspir basin 4 holes were drilled by GSB and in
the Dighipara basin only one hole was drilled.

Wardell Armstrong of UK carried out a techno-economic feasibility study of the


Barapukuria Coal in 1990. Coal here is extended in an area of 5.25 square kilometres
below the surface at depths ranging from 118m to 506m. The total reserve of coal in this
field is 300 million tons and the mineable reserve is 70 million tons. The coal is high
volatile, low sulphur bituminous type. Government of Bangladesh made an agreement
with a Chinese consortium to extract this coal. petrobangla is the executing agency of this
mine. The mine will be opened by two shafts of 6m diameter to a depth of 280m below
the surface. Mining of the Barapukuria coal is in progress. Production of this coal is
expected to start in June 2002 with a target of one million metric ton of coal per year.
Eighty percent of this coal will be consumed in a 300 MW power plant near the mine
mouth. The rest of coal will be consumed in industry and domestic uses.

Coal in the Jamalganj-Paharpur area is too deep to mine. Extraction of coal bed methane
from this field is under consideration. A detailed study of this is yet to be done. Coals in
the Khalaspir basin and Dighipara basin are same as the Barapukuria basin. A detailed
geological study of the coal including extent, reserves and thickness is yet to be
completed. Broken Hill Proprietor of Australia discovered Gondwana coal at a depth of
150m below the surface at Phulbari of Dinajpur district in 1997. Detailed study of this
coal is yet to be done. Besides the Permian Gondwana coal in the northern part of
Bangladesh, GSP discovered two beds of ligno-bituminous Tertiary coal in Takerghat-

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Baglibazar area at a depth of 45m to 97m below the surface in the years 1960-62. The
beds are 0.90m to 1.70m thick and reserves were estimated at 3.00 million tons.

6. FOREST RESOURCES

Forest is a very important renewable resource in Bangladesh. It provides materials like


timber, pulp, pole, fuel wood, food, and medicine, habitat for wildlife and primary base
for biodiversity. It also provides oxygen, controls or reduces the intensity of the cyclones
and tidal surges in the coastal areas of Bangladesh, influences the rainfall, and sustained
water yield in the river systems etc. Besides these, forest is also used for hunting, and
nature based tourism. Now days, eco-tourism is the preferred type of tourism and it is
widely believed that eco-tourism could be an alternative mechanism for environmentally
sustainable development without depleting the forest resources and its habitat and
biodiversity. Considering all these, forest and consequently forest management is getting
importance with the passage of time.

Present Forest Management

The present forest management is almost totally different from the past one in respect of
its objectives and philosophy. Present forest management objectives are not only to
produce timber only but also to provide clean air, clean water, healthy habitat for wildlife
and to act as a major source of biodiversity and nature-based tourism. The present
philosophy of forest management is to involve people in the management and create an
environment so that people can feel that they have also some stakes on trees growing on
the forestland and to improve living standard of the people residing in the vicinity of the
forests.

Recent Improvement in Management Practices:

Inventories of all major forest formations in the country except the forests in Chittagong
Hill Tracts were carried out. This has provided the necessary database for using
quantitative information for writing more comprehensive management plans for different
forests. Small units of uniform crop have been identified and information on these units
was recorded with the help of computer based Resources Information Management
System (RIMS) unit in FD.

The inventory and associated activities have made long desired information on the status,
growth and yield of forests in the country available. It has been possible to develop
volume and yield functions for all major plantation species and volume functions for
major species in natural forests. This has made possible to regulate yield for long period
of time. A new working plan format has been devised to make it possible for the use of
the available information in future management plans.

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An annual plan of operation is included as part of the management plan. This is basically
a detailed plan of operation within the forest division and is prepared by the Divisional
Forest Officer.

In recent years there has been a substantial shift in emphasis in Forestry and Forest
Management from maximizing yield towards maximizing sustainability through
increased participation of local population, conserving biodiversity and maintaining
forestry services.

The present management systems are evolved from the past ones through various
modifications in order to incorporate present objectives of forest management. Some new
forest management systems are also added to address new concept in forest management
such as agro forestry, homestead plantation, strip plantation, participatory forestry on
encroached forest, mangrove forestation on newly accreted land in the coastal area,
conservation area management to preserve wildlife habitat and biodiversity.

Depending on their location, nature and type of management of the forests of Bangladesh
can be grouped into three broad categories, which is tabled below:

Types of Forest Area(m ha) Percentage


Natural Mangrove Forest and Plantation 0.73 4.95
Tropical evergreen and semi-evergreen Forest 0.67 4.54
Tropical moist deciduous Forest 0.12 0.81
Total 1.52 10.3

Types of Forest:

i) Mangrove Forests:

Natural Mangrove Forests:

The largest single tract of natural mangrove forest is the Sundarban. It consists of a total
of 6, 01,700 hectare which is 4.07% of total land mass of the country and 40% of total
forest land. Sundarban harbors 334 species of trees, shrubs and epiphytes and 269 species
of wild animals. World renowned Royal Bengal Tiger is the magnificent animal of the
Sundarban. 1, 39,700 hectare forest land of Sundarban is declared as World Heritage Site
where three wildlife sanctuaries viz.Sundarban East, Sundarban West and Sundarban
South wildlife sanctuaries are located. The forest inventory of 1998 exhibits that there are
12.26 million cubic meter timber is available from the species of Sundri (Heritiera
fomes), Gewa (Excoecaria agallocha), Keora (Sonneratia apetala), Baen (Avecennia
officinalis), Dhundul (Xylocarpus granatum), Passur (Xylocarpus mekongensis) etc with
15cm and above diameter.

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Sundri is the most important tree species in the Sundarban which is distributed over 73%
of the reserve. Extent of Sundri is followed by Gewa (Excoecaria agallocha), Baen
(Avecinnia offcecinalis), Passur (Xylocarpur mekongensis), Keora (Sonneratia apetala)
etc. There are some other non-wood forest products like Golpata (Nypa fruticans), honey,
wax, fish, crab etc which are also of high value.

Sundarban is a unique habitat for a number of wildlife. Among them some mammals are
Bengal Tiger (Panthera tigris tigris), Gangetic Dolphin (Platanista gangetica), Monkey
(Macaca mulatta), Indian Fishing cat (Felis viverrina), Indian Otter (Lutra perspicillata),
Spotted Deer (Axis axis) etc. Reptiles like Estuarine Crocodile (Crocodylus porosus),
Monitor Lizard (Varanus salvator), Rock Python (Python molurus) and Green Turtle
(Chelonia mydas) etc. are found in the Sundarban.

Mangrove Plantation:
Mangrove afforestation along the entire southern coastal frontier is an innovation of
foresters. During 1960-61, Government undertook afforestation programme along the
shore land of coastal districts. This initiative got mementum from 1980-81 with the aid of
development partners and forestation programs are extended over foreshore islands,
embankments and along the open coasts.

Since 1960-61 upto 1999-2000, 142,835 hectare of mangrove plantations have been
raised under a number of coastal afforestation projects. The present net area of mangrove
plantation is 132,000 hectare after losing some area due to natural calamities.

ii) Tropical evergreen and semi-evergreen forests

Tropical evergreen and semi evergreen forests are extended over Chittagong, Cox’s
Bazar, Chittagong Hill Tracts and Sylhet totaling an area of 6,70,000 hectare which is
4.54% of total landmass of the country and 44% of national forest land. Depending on
topography, soil and climate these area are categorized as:
i) Tropical wet evergreen forests and
ii) Tropical semi-evergreen forests.
The hill forests are abundant with numerous plant as well as animal species. Some
important flora are Garjan (Dipterocarpus spp.), Chapalish (Artocarpus chaplasha),
Telsur (Hopea odorata), Tali (Palaquium polyanthrum), Kamdeb (Callophyllum
polyanthum), Uriam (Mangifera sylvatica), Jarul (Legarstromia speciosa), Civit
(Swintonia floribunda), Toon (Cedrela toona), Bandorhola (Duabanga grandiflora) etc.
Moreover there are bamboo, cane, climbers and fern etc. in these forests.

These forests are brought under plantation programme since 1871. At present, plantation
activities are being conducted under development projects. Some valuable plantation
species are Teak (Tectona grandis), Gamar (Gmelina arborea), Mehogani (Swietenia
spp), Chapalish (Artocarpus chaplasha), Jarul (Legarstromia speciosa), Koroi (Albizzia
spp), Chikrassi (Chikrassia tabularis), Pynkado (Xylia dolabriformis), Kadam
(Anthocephalus cadamba), Telsur (Hopea odorata) etc.

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The latest forest inventory shows that a total of 23, 93 million cubic meter forest
produces are available there.

Among the mammals Elephant (Elephas maximus), monkey (Macaca mulatta), Wild
Boar (Sus scrofa), Barking Deer ( Muntiacus muntjak), Samvar (Cervus unicolor), and
Indian Leopard (Panthera pardus). Among the reptiles King cobra (Ophiophagus hanna)
Monitor Lizard (Varanus salvator) and Bengal Monitor Lizard (Varanus bengalensis) are
remarkable.

iii) Tropical moist deciduous Forests

The Central and northern districts covering an area of 1,20,000 ha about 0.81% of total
land mass of the country and 7.8% of the country’s forest land are bestowed with
Tropical Moist Deciduous Forests. This forest is intermingled with the neighbouring
settlements and fragmented into smaller patches. Sal (Shorea robusta) is the main species
there with other associates like Koroi (Albizzia procera), Azuli (Dillenia pentagyna),
Sonalu (Cassia fistula), Bohera (Terminalia belerica), Haritaki (Terminalia chebula),
Kanchan (Bauhinia acuminata), Jarul (Lagerstroemia speciosa), Jam (Syzygium spp) etc.
A recent forest inventory encountered that 3.75 million cubic meter wood available in the
sal forests. Presently participatory forestry programme are being implemented here under
the social forestry initiatives. Among the mammals, Jackel (Canis aureus), Monkey
(Macaca mulatta), Wild cat (Felis chaus) etc. are found there and among the reptiles
Bengal Monitor Lizard (Varanus bengalensis) and common cobra are remarkable.

iv) Village Forests

Tree coverage in the village forests are 2, 70,000 hectare which acts as the source of a
remarkable portion of national demand of forest produces. The latest inventory exhibits
that a total of 54.7 million cu m forest produces are available in this village forests.

Contribution to Economy:

Forestry is a long-term production system. It has manifold contribution towards the


welfare of mankind. The multiple use of forest resources have been recognized from the
advent of civilization. The Forestry sector contributes about 5% of the total GDP (Gross
domestic product) of Bangladesh. This does not reflect the true contribution of this
sector. The rural population uses fuelwood and other minor forest products practically
free of cost. Forest also plays an important role in protecting watersheds, irrigation and
hydraulic structure, also in keeping the rivers and ports navigable. It also plays key role
in protecting the coastal areas from natural calamities. The role of forest in protecting the
environment from pollution and its contribution towards bio-diversity is immense.

The participatory social forestry contributes towards rural poverty reduction significantly.
In the last 3 years, out of total sale proceeds of timber and fuelwood about 308 (three
hundred and eight) million taka has been distributed to 23561 participants. Social
Forestry Rules have been framed to give the legal basis of benefit sharing system. Tree

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farming fund has been created from the 10% of the sale proceeds to create new resources
on the same pieces of land involving the same participants, to ensure sustainability. The
TFF operating committee has been established involving local government and Local
Community Organization (LCO).

Apart from the sale proceeds, participants also get money from Forest Department for
their labor input in the plantation activities. They also get periodic income from
agriculture crops grown between the trees both in forest and marginal land. The
participants also get thinning and pruning outputs in many places.

Employment generation
In 2001-2002, about 2% (two percent) of the total manpower of the country was engaged
in the forestry sector. Many people actually benefited directly from forestry-related
activities e.g. in wood based industry, saw milling, furniture making, establishing private
nursery, logging, extraction and in afforestation programs. Besides this in Sundarban
millions of people are dependant on the the mangrove forest for their livelihood (e.g
mawali, bawali, fisherman etc).

Fuel wood
Fuelwood is the major wood product required today, Bangladesh needs over 8.0 million
cubic meter fuelwood every year. Domestic cooking uses an estimated 63%, which is 5.1
million cubic meter annually. Industrial and commercial use is also significant, which is
2.9 million cubic meter annually. According to Forestry Master Plan, village household
supply about 75% of the fuelwood in the country where as government forestry program
provides the rest 25%.
Due to limited alternative sources of energy the rural people are mainly dependant on
fuelwood for cooking and other household activities. The Government of Bangladesh
took many initiatives to provide the consumer an additional supply of fuelwood for the
future.

NWFP (Non Wood Forest Products)


Some of the important non-wood forest products are listed below:

Bamboo (Melocanna baccifera, Bambusa tulda etc.)Plays a very crucial role in our rural
economy and is a singular essential material for construction of temporary house / shelter
for the rural people, especially for the hilly tribal people.

Sungrass (Imperata spp.)The most common roofing / thatching material for temporary
low -cost housing in the villages and forest terrain's of Bangladesh.

Cane (Calamus viminalis,Calamus guruba)Used for domestic purposes by the rural


people, but more so, for sophisticated furniture making & luxury souvenir articles.

Pati Pata / Murta (Clinogynae dichotoma)This is an excellent material for floor-mats


(Pati), which is extensively used by the poor villagers and also as a luxury item for the
rich people. This is also exported by the cottage industries as a finished product.

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Gol-Pata (Nypa fruticans)This is a very popular and essential thatching / roofing material
for poor people, around Khulna, Bagerhat and Satkhira districts and fetches handsome
revenue for the Forest Department.

Leaves, Bark & Fruits"Kurus pata'' Holarrhena antidysenterica is very popular for
medicinal use. Horitaki (Terminalia chebula), Amlaki (Phyllanthus emblica), Bohera
(Terminalia belerica) popularly called "Trifala" (Myrabolum) are used as medicine in the
country.

HoneyUsed as food, drink, beverage and also as a medicine in the country.

Shells, Conch-Shells, oysters etcConsiderable quantity of shells, oysters, conchshells are


collected by local inhabitants, as a means of livelihood in the coastal forest-belts, like
Cox's Bazar, Teknaf, Moheshkhali, Barisal, Patuakhali, Sundarbans etc. These are highly
priced by tourists as souvenir articles and as such may be exported.

Fish ResourcesIn rivers flowing inside forest areas like Sundarbans, Chittagong Hill
Tracts and Sylhet (as well as in the coastal belts and offshore islands under the
jurisdiction of Forest Department) considerable quantity of different types of fish (both
sweet-water and saline fish) are harvested by local fishermen, for which the Forest
Department earns revenue.

7. NATURAL GAS:

In Bangladesh natural gas is one of the important sources of energy that accounts for 73
percent of the commercial energy of the country. Till now 23 gas fields have been
discovered in the country. As per Gas Sector Master Plan 2006, the estimated proven
recoverable reserve (P1) of the 22 gas fields was 15.188 TCF. The reserve of Bangura
gas field in Block 9 is being assessed. As of June 2007, total 7.054 TCF gas has already
been produced leaving only 8.134 TCF recoverable gas. Moreover, 22 gas fields have
reserves of 5.28 TCF under proven extractable category (P2) and 7.71 TCF under
possible category (P3).

Table: Total Gas Reserve, Extractable Gas and Cumulative Production of Gas up to
June 2007:- (In Billion Cubic Feet (BCF)
Gas Field Proved Cumulative Proved Probable

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Reserve Production Remaining Reserve
(Recoverable) (Provisional) Reserve (Recoverable)
(Up to June
2007)
Producing:
BAKHRABAD 790.00 688.39 121.61 259.00
HABIGANJ 3825.00 1442.70 2382.30 27.00
JALABAD 511.00 395.92 115.08 3026.00
KAILASHTILLA 1067.00 398.28 668.72 837.00
MEGHNA 72.00 35.83 36.17 48.00
NARSHINGDI 165.00 74.28 90.72 50.00
RASHIDPUR 979.00 410.19 568.81 423.00
SYLEHT 367.00 185.74 181.26 112.00
SANGU* 848.00 415.88 432.12 -
SALDA NADI 53.00 51.01 1.99 63.00
TITAS 4000.00 2709.55 1290.45 1128.00
BEANIBAZAR 170.00 47.08 122.92 -
FENCHUGANJ 60.00 43.40 16.60 223.00
FENMOULVIBAZAR 52.00 18.50 33.50 77.00
BIBIYANA 347.00 83.90 263.10 -
BANGURA** 1209.00 30.86 1178.14 1192
NOT IN PRODUCTION:
BEGUMGANJ 10.00 0.00 10.00 23.00
KUTUBDIA* - 0.00 0.00 46.00
SEMUTANG 121.80 0.00 121.80 -
SHAHBAZPUR 256.00 0.00 256.00 210.00
PRODUCTION SUSPEND:
CHHATAK 265.00 25.80 239.20 209.00
KAMTA 21.00 17.05 3.95 25.00
TOTAL 15,188.80 7054.36 8134.44 5278.00

* Offshore field
** The reserve of Bangura gas field in Block 9 is under evaluation, but production from
Bangura gas field has been started since May 13, 2006 at the rate of about 70 mmcfd.

Presently, 73 wells in 17 gas fields are in production. The producing gas fields are: Titas
(15 wells), Bakhrabad (4 wells), Habiganj (9 wells), Rashidpur (6 wells), Kailashtilla (5
wells), Sylhet (2 wells), Narsingdi (2 wells), Meghna (1 well), Saldanadi (2 wells),
Fenchuganj (1 well), Sangu (6 wells), Jalalabad (4 wells), Beanibazar (2 wells), Feni (3
wells), Moulavibazar (4 wells) and Bangura (2 wells) and Bibiyana (5 wells). A total of

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526.72 billion cubic feet (BCF) gas was produced in the fiscal year 2005-2006, while in
the fiscal year 2006-2007 total gas production was 562.13 BCF, i.e. gas production
growth rate was 6.72 percent in FY 2006-2007.

Year wise and sector wise gas consumption and demand are shown in the following table
respectively.

Table: Sector and Year wise Consumption of Natural Gas


In Billion Cubic Feet (BCF)

Fiscal Years 1999- 2000- 2001- 2002- 2003- 2004- 2005- 2006-
2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
Production 332.35 372.16 391.53 421.16 454.59 486.75 526.72 562.13
Power 147.62 175.27 190.03 190.54 199.40 211.02 222.72 221.15
Fertilizer 83.31 88.43 78.78 95.89 92.80 93.97 88.58 93.47
Industry 41.52 47.99 53.56 63.76 46.49 51.68 63.44 77.48
Sector Capacity 0 0 0 0 32.03 37.87 49.02 62.51
Power
Tea States 0.64 0.65 0.72 0.74 0.80 0.80 0.76 0.75
B. Fields 0.35 0.44 0.53 0.52 0.12 0.00 0.00 0.00
(Seasonal)
Commercial 3.85 4.06 4.25 4.56 4.83 4.85 5.24 5.66
Domestic 29.56 31.85 36.74 44.80 49.22 52.49 57.13 63.25
CNG 0 0 0 0.23 1.94 3.62 6.71 11.99
Total 306.85 348.69 364.61 401.04 427.66 456.30 493.61 536.26
Sales

T a b l e - Sector wise Demand for Natural Gas


(In Billion Cubic Feet)

Sector 2006-07 2007-08 2008-09 2009-10 2010-11


(Actual)
Power 221.15 238.50 257.60 278.20 300.50

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Capacity 62.51 80.00 102.40 120.90 142.60
Fertilizer 93.47 94.00 94.00 94.00 94.00
Industry 77.48 93.00 111.60 133.90 160.70
Commercial 5.66 6.00 6.40 6.80 7.30
Brick Field 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
(Seasonal)
Domestic 63.25 70.80 79.30 88.90 99.50
Tea-Estates 0.75 1.00 1.00 1.00 1.00
CNG 11.99 20.40 34.70 58.90 88.40
*System 25.87 21.10 20.00 19.00 18.00
Loss
Total 562.13 624.90 707.00 801.00 911.90
*Including own use.

In Bangladesh, it has become extremely important to explore and develop new gas fields
to meet the increasing demand of gas. To intensify exploration activities, the whole
country has been divided into 23 blocks. As a result, International Oil Companies have
signed 10 Production Sharing Contracts 127 (PSCs) for 12 acreage blocks. Out of these,
02 PSCs have already expired. Currently, 08 PSCs are in force in 10 acreage blocks.

Meanwhile, Cairn Energy has discovered an offshore gas field called Sangu in Block 16.
It has been producing gas since 1998 under production sharing contract and contributing
to our national gas supply grid. In 2005, a seperate agreement was signed with Cairn to
further explore three ring- gas fenced prospects i.e. Hatia, Monpura and Magnama in
block # 16. Chevron (the then Unocal) discovered two gas fields called Moulavibazar and
Bibiyana in blocks 14 and 12 respectively. On successful completion of development
activities, Chevron has been producing gas from Moulvibazar gas field since April 2005.
The first phase development work of Bibiyana gas field has recently been completed and
gas production started from 18th March 2007. Now the second phase developmentwork
of Bibiyana gas field is going on. Tullow also discovered Bangora-Lalmai gas field in
block #9. Tullow is implementing development activities in Bangora-Lalmai gas field
and simultaneously supplying gas to the national grid through Long Term Testing. The
government has been making preparations for Bangladesh Offshore Bidding Round 2007
to be invited very soon.

To meet the increasing demand of gas, several important projects are being implemented
such as- GOB funded Shahbazpur Gas Field Development Project, Operation Capability
Strengthening project, Mubarakpur Oil/Gas Exploration Well Drilling Project, Gas
Supply to Sylhet Combined Cycle Power Plant and Shahjalal Fertilizer Factory etc. and
self financed projects like Reservoir Management Project, Installation of MSTE plant in
Beanibazar and Kailashtilla gas fields, Installation of condensate fractionation plant in
Rashidpur gas field, Drilling of new wells in Habiganj and Narsingdi gas fields, Drilling
of new wells in Titas gas field, Redevelopment of Bakhrabad gas field (1st phase),
Recompletion of Meghna well # 1. An opportunity has been created for expansion of gas

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network to the western & south-western zone of the country by implementing of ADB
funded “Gas Transmission and Development Project (GTDP)”. Under GTDP, a total of
356 km gas transmission pipelines will be constructed to transport gas to the western &
south-western region of the country. These pipelines are; (i) Monohardi-Dhanua, Elenga-
East Bank of Jamuna gas transmission pipeline (51 km) (ii) West Bank of Jamuna
Bridge-Nalka, Hatikumrul-Iswardi-Bheramara gas transmission pipeline (87 km), (iii)
Bonpara-Rajshahi gas transmission pipeline (53 km) (iv) Bheramara-Khulna gas
transmission pipeline (165 km). Moreover, 04 compressor stations will be installed at
Muchai (01), Elenga (01) and Ashuganj (02) under GTDP project.

LPG
The LPG Plant at Kailashtilla has been producing Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) with
production capacity of 5000 tons per annum from the NGL being extracted from
Kailashtilla gas field. In addition, a programme for installation of NGL fractionation
plant having the capacity of 110 tons/day at a cost of Taka 105 Crore (GOB fund) is
under implementation at Kailashtilla under Turnkey EPC contract to produce petroleum
products like LPG, MS, HSD, Kerosene by fractionating NGL extracted from the wet gas
fields at Kailashtilla, Beanibazar and Jalalabad. After implementation of this project
about 8,560 MT of LPG, 13,140 MT of petrol and 14,600 MT of diesel will be produced
per year from this plant.

CNG
Vehicle conversion to Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) is well underway and promotion
of this mode of fuel is being encouraged. Before using CNG, the uncontrolled emission
of motor vehicles especially from two stroke three-wheeler baby taxi and diesel bus was
the major cause of air pollution in urban areas specially Dhaka City. It had poor visibility
due to air pollution in many areas of Dhaka city. Eye irritation, respiratory illness, cardio
vascular diseases were common phenomenon to city dwellers. Natural gas of Bangladesh
consists of typically more than 96 percent methane and practically contains no sulfur. By
raising the use of CNG substantial improvement in air quality is observed in urban areas.
Government has been encouraging private sector participation for installation of CNG re-
fuelling stations. To facilitate CNG use, about 165 CNG re-fuelling stations and 108
conversion workshops have already been set-up in the country and 1,13,945 CNG
vehicles run in the country as of June 2007.

Among these CNG re-fuelling stations, 92 at Dhaka, 11 at Savar, 12 at Gazipur, 7 at


Narayanganj, 5 at Comilla, 2 at Feni, 1 at Kishorgonj, 3 at Bogra, 6 at Sylhet, 25 at
Chittagong and 1 at Pabna have been installed. Installation of 18 more CNG re-fueling
stations in various regions of the country is underway. Under ADB funded “Dhaka Clean
Fuel Project” another 26 CNG re-fuelling stations will be installed within any convenient
plakhe of the following 06 highways: i) Dhaka-Chittagong ii) Dhaka-Sylhet iii) Dhaka-
Mymensingh iv) Dhaka-Aricha v) Dhaka-Sirajgonj-Bogra and vi) Dhaka-Mawa highway.
For installation of 26 CNG filling stations by private entrepreneurs a loan agreement has
been signed on 30 June 2007 with Dutch Bangla Bank Ltd. and another agreement with
Southeast Bank was signed on 15th July 2007. Under this project, 100 CNG

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buses/chassis (CBU condition) will be handed over to private entrepreneurs through
Commercial Bank/Leasing Company, 2,500 conversion kits and 3,000 cylinders out of
5,000 conversion kits and 6,000 cylinders have already been imported. Installation of a
new CNG conversion workshop at Dhania is in progress and existing workshop at
Joarshahara will also be upgraded and modernized under the same project. Efforts are
continuing to convert more vehicles to CNG mode and installation of more re-fuelling
stations are being planned to ensure supply of CNG to the converted vehicles.
Accordingly, government has liberalised the conditions relating to importation of CNG
conversion kits etc. so that private entrepreneurs could come forward at ease.

Activities surrounding the promotion of CNG are positive contribution to the economy of
the country. Average CNG usage (approx.) is 25.50 MMCM per month which is
equivalent to 30.60 million liters of Petrol/Octane. By using CNG, monthly savings in
foreign currency worth US$ 32.04 million i.e. yearly savings in foreign currency to the
tune of US$ 384.50 million oil import bills could be generated.

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 EDUCATION SECTOR OF BANGLADESH

Educational Structure of Bangladesh

Description of the Present Education System in Bangladesh:

The present education system of Bangladesh may be broadly divided into three major
stages, viz. primary, secondary and tertiary education. Primary level institutions impart
primary education basically. Junior secondary/secondary and higher secondary level
institutions impart secondary education. Degree pass, degree honours, masters and other
higher-level institutions or equivalent section of other related institutions impart tertiary
education. The education system is operationally categorized into two streams: primary
education (Grade I-V) managed by the Ministry of Primary and Mass Education
(MOPME)) and the other system is the post-primary education which covers all other
levels from junior secondary to higher education under the administration of the Ministry
of Education (MOE). The post-primary stream of education is further classified into four

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types in terms of curriculum: general education, madrasah education, technical-
vocational education and professional education.

1. General Education:

a) Primary education
The first level of education is comprised of 5 years of formal schooling (class / grades I
- V). Education, at this stage, normally begins at 6+ years of age up to 11 years. Primary
education is generally imparted in primary schools. Nevertheless, other types of
institutions like kindergartens and junior sections attached to English medium schools are
also imparting it.

b) Secondary education
The second level of education is comprised of 7 (3+2+2) years of formal schooling. The
first 3 years (grades VI-VIII) is referred to as junior secondary; the next 2 years (grades
IX -X) is secondary while the last 2 years (grades XI - XII) is called higher secondary.

There is diversification of courses after three years of schooling in junior secondary level.
Vocational and technical courses are offered in vocational and trade institute/schools.
Moreover, there are high schools where SSC (vocational) courses have been introduced.

In secondary education, there are three streams of courses such as, Humanities, Science
and Business Education, which start at class IX, where the students are free to choose
their course(s) of studies.

High schools are managed either by government or private individuals or organizations.


Most of the privately managed secondary schools provide co-education. However, there
are many single sex institutions in secondary level education.

The academic programme terminates at the end of class X when students are to appear at
the public examination called S.S.C. (Secondary School Certificate). The Boards of
Intermediate and Secondary Educations (BISE) conduct the S.S.C. examination. There
are seven such Boards at different places in Bangladesh namely: Dhaka, Rajshahi,
Jessore, Comilla, Chittagong, Sylhet, and Barisal.

The secondary education is designed to prepare the students to enter into the higher
secondary stage. In higher secondary stage, the course is of two-year duration (XI - XII)
which is being offered by Intermediate Colleges or by intermediate section of degree or
master colleges.

c) Tertiary Education:

i) College
The third stage of education is comprised of 2-6 years of formal schooling. The minimum
requirement for admission to higher education is the higher secondary certificate (H.S.C).
HSC holders are qualified to enroll in 3-year degree pass courses while for honours, they

72
may enroll in 4-year bachelors' degree honours courses in degree level colleges or in the
universities. After successful completion of a pass/honours bachelors' degree course, one
can enroll in the master's degree course. Master degree courses are of one year for
honours bachelor degree holders and 2 years for pass bachelor degree holders. For those
aspiring to take up M.Phil and Ph.D courses in selected disciplines or areas of
specialization, the duration is of 2 years for M.Phil and 3-4 years for Ph.Ds after
completion of master's degree. Higher education is being offered in the universities and
post HSC level colleges and institutes of diversified studies in professional, technical,
technological and other special types of education.

ii) University
There are 73 universities in Bangladesh. Out of these, 21 universities are in the public
sector, while the other 52 are in the private sector. Out of 21 public sector universities, 19
universities provide regular classroom instruction facilities and services. Bangladesh
Open University (BOU) conducts non-campus distance education programmes especially
in the field of teacher education and offers Bachelor of Education (B.Ed.) and Master of
Education (M.Ed) degrees. BOU conducts 18 formal courses and 19 non-formal courses.
Bangladesh National University mainly functions as an affiliating university for degree
and post-graduate degree level education at different colleges and institutions in different
field of studies. After successful completion of the specified courses, it conducts final
examinations and awards degree, diplomas and certificates to the successful candidates.
The degrees are B.A, B.S.S, B.Sc, B.Com (Pass & Honours) M.A, M.Sc, M.S.S and
M.Com Moreover, this university also offers LL.B, and other degrees. Bangladesh
National University offers part-time training to university teachers.

There is only one medical university namely, "Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical
University", like other public universities, offers courses on a different system where
FCPS Degree is offered in the disciplines of medical education; diploma courses are
offered in 12 disciplines. MD degree in 15 subjects and MS courses on 8 subjects are also
offered.

2. Madrasah Education:

The old scheme of madrasah education was introduced in 1780 with the establishment of
Calcutta Madrasah. In madrasah education, one can learn Islamic religious education
along with the general education as complementary to each other in the system of
education. The madrasah education system has been continuing with some modifications
according to the demand of the time, and many madrasahs grew up in this sub-continent.
The government has been providing government grants to the teachers and employees of
the non-government madrasahs like other non-government education institutions (schools
and colleges). There are five levels in the madrasah education system, namely:

a. Primary level or ebtedayee education


This is equivalent to primary level of general education. The first level of madrasah
education is comprised of 5 years of schooling (grades I - V). Normally, the children of 6
years of age begin in class 1 and finishes class V at the age of 11 years. Ebtedayee

73
education is imparted in independent ebtedayee madrasahs and ebtedayee sections of
dhakhil, alim, fazil and kamil madrasahs. It is also imparted in some of the private quami
- kharizi madrasahs.

b. Secondary level
The secondary level of madrasah education is comprised of 7 (5+2) years of formal
schooling. It takes five years in dhakhil stage (S.S.C. level) from grade VI - X while the
last 2 years in alim (higher secondary) stage. Dhakhil level education is imparted in
dhakhil madrasahs and in dhakhil level of alim, fazil and kamil madrasahs. Alim is
equivalent to higher secondary certificate education imparted to alim madrasahs and in
alim level of fazil and kamil madrasahs.

There are diversification of courses after three years of schooling in secondary level of
education from grade IX of dhakhil stage and grade XI of alim stage. There are streams
of courses such as humanities, science and business education, where students are free to
choose their courses of studies. Private individuals or private bodies manage all
madrasahs of this level. Most of these madrasahs provide co-education. However, there
are some single gender madrasahs in this level of madrasah education. There are two
public examinations namely; dhakhil and alim after the completion of 10 years of
schooling and twelve years of education, respectively. The Bangladesh Madrasah
Education Board (BMEB) provides these two certificates.

c. Tertiary level of madrasah education


This level is comprised of 4 (2+2) years of formal education. The minimum requirement
for admission to higher level of madrasah education is the alim (equivalent to HSC)
certificates. Alim pass students are qualified to enroll in 2-year fazil education. This level
of education is imparted in fazil madrasah and in fazil level of kamil madrasahs. After
successful completion of fazil degree one can enroll in 2 -years kamil level education.
There are four streams of courses in kamil level education; streams are hadis, tafsir, fiqh
and adab. Bangladesh Madrasah Education Board conducts these two fazil and kamil
examinations and award certificates. After successful completion of the specified courses
one can appear these examinations.

Out of the total kamil the government manages madrasahs only three madrasahs and
others are managed by either individual or by private bodies. However, there are few
girls' madrasah for girl students.

The Bangladesh Madrasah Education Board has the following functions as regard to
madrasah education: grants affiliations to different levels of madrasahs from ebtedayee to
kamil; prescribes syllabi and curricula; conducts public examinations (dhakhil to kamil)
and scholarship examinations. Besides the public system of madrasah education there are
a good number of private madrasahs for the Muslim students, namely: hafizia, qiratia,
quami and nizamiah. Most of these madrasahs are residential. These type of madrasah are
sometimes called kharizia as these are beyond the purview of the general system of
education. Recently, these quami madrasahs have been organized under the umbrella of a
private board known as 'Befaqul Madaris or Quami Madrasah Board which constitutes

74
curricula and syllabi of quami madrasahs, conducts examinations and awards certificates
and degrees.

3. Technical - Vocational

For the students whose interest is not strictly academic may find technical-vocational
programmes more interesting and more valuable for their future. Government tries to
ensure that the course curriculum should be relevant to students' interest and aspirations
while at the same time it should address the needs of the job market.

a. Primary level
There is no technical-vocational institution in primary level of education. Ebtedayee in
the first level (Primary level) of madrasah education has no scope for technical-
vocational education. Accordingly, technical - vocational education in Bangladesh is
designed in three phases under two major levels of secondary and tertiary level of
education.

b. Secondary level
Vocational courses starts from secondary level. The certificate courses prepare skilled
workers in different vocations starting from ninth grade after completion of three years of
schooling in secondary school. At this level the courses are diversified in different
vocations spread over 1 to 2 years duration. Recently, 2 years duration vocational courses
have been introduced at the higher secondary level in government managed vocational
training institute (renamed as Technical School & College). Diploma courses prepare the
diploma engineers at the polytechnic institutes. This course spread over 4 years duration
after passing the secondary school certification examination. There is a technical
education board called Bangladesh Technical Education Board (BTEB), which grants
affiliation to the technical institutes. It conducts examinations of the students completing
different courses in different vocational and technical education, and awards certificates
to the successful candidates.

4. Professional Education

The College of Textile Technology and College of Leather Technology offer four -year
degree courses in Textile Engineering and Leather Technology respectively after
completing Higher Secondary Education. The minimum requirement to be admitted to
teachers training colleges (TTCs) for Bachelor of Education, Bachelor of Physical
Education in Physical Education College is graduation degree. Generally, in-service
teachers undertake this professional training course along with some unemployed
graduates. Professional education also imparted in Medical Colleges, Dental Colleges,
Nursing College, Homeopathic Colleges, Law Colleges etc.

75
5. Other Types of Education

5.1 Religious and Moral Education


One of the aims of education is to establish human, cultural and social values in every tier
and sphere of individual and national life. Religious and moral education is one of the
ways of achieving this aim.

The followers of every religion of the country have the right to learn the main subjects of
their respective religions, acquire knowledge about rituals and ceremonies of their
respective religion. Religious and moral education is imparted with this end in view.

i) Islamic Studies
In order to lead life according to the Islamic tenets and regulations, it is indispensable for
every Muslim male/female to receive Islamic education and implement these in their day
to day life.

ii) Hindu - Religious Studies


Bangladesh Sanskrit and Pali Board conducts 3- year course on Sanskrit and religious
subjects. These subjects are Adhya in the first year, Madhya in the second year and
Upadhi in the third year. Sanskrit language, Prourahitta, Smriti (Hindu law) etc. subjects
are included in the courses.

Bangladesh Sanskrit and Pali Board is not an independent or autonomous organization.


The Director General of the Directorate of Secondary and Higher Education by virtue of
the post is the Chairman of Sanskrit and Pali Board and Management Parishad.
Authorized by the Ministry of Education the Chairman conducts all activities of the
Board. An honorary member of the Management Parishad plays the role of Secretary.
There are tols (schools for teaching Sanskrit), choupathies and colleges under the control
of Bangladesh Sanskrit and Pali Board. The minimum requirement to be admitted in
these courses is SSC. After completion of 3-year course, one can get the title "Teertha".
For each subject, the 3-year course Adhya, Madhya and Upadhi is to be completed
separately.

iii) Buddhist Religious Studies


The system of Buddhist religious studies and the Buddhist religious language Pali are
almost similar to that of Hindu religious studies. There is 3-year title course in Pali and
'Bisharad' is offered in Pali instead of Teertha. Bangladesh Sanskrit and Pali Board
conduct traditional system of Pali education. There are about a hundred of Pali Tolls in
the country.

iv) Christian Religious Education


To meet the religious education needs of Christians in Bangladesh, there are Bible
schools and intermediate seminaries which enroll students in the SSC; there are also
major seminaries and theological colleges where students with HSC are admitted. The
successful students are awarded degrees both in Bachelor and Masters in Theology and

76
Divinity. These are all run and managed by the Church bodies which cater to the needs of
different denominations of Christianity.

EDUCATIONAL ADMINISTRATION & MANAGEMENT

Education Systems in Bangladesh is being managed and administered by two Ministries


viz. Ministry of Education (MOE) and Ministry of Primary and Mass Education
(MOPME) in association with the attached Departments and Directorates as well as a
number of autonomous bodies.

Ministry of Education (MOE):

This Ministry is concerned with policy formulation, planning, monitoring, evaluation and
execution of plans and programmes related to secondary and higher education including
technical & madrasah education. The line directorates, viz.. Directorate of Secondary and
Higher Education and Directorate of Technical Education are responsible for
management and supervision of institutions under their respective control.

Directorate of Secondary and Higher Education (DSHE)


This Directorate is headed by the Director-General who is responsible for administration,
management and control of secondary and higher education including madrasah and
other special types of education. It is assisted by sub-ordinate Offices located at the
divisional, district and thana levels.

The Directorate of Technical Education (DTE)


This Directorate is headed by the Director-General and is responsible for the management
and administration of technical & vocational institutions like polytechnics, monotechnics
and other similar types of institutes. It has Inspectorate Offices at the Divisional
Headquarters.

Bangladesh National Commission for UNESCO (BNCU)


This organisation functions as a corporate body within the MOE. This is headed by the
Minister of Education as Chairman and the Education Secretary as the Secretary-General.
The Commission consists of 69 members constituted by eminent educationists and
intellectuals interested in educational, scientific and cultural matters in the country. A
senior official designated as Secretary normally heads the Secretariat of the Commission.

Chief Accounts Office (CAO)


In pursuance of the Government a separate accounts office under a Chief Accounts
Officer (C.A.O) does policy of decentralization the accounting function of the MOE.

i) National Curriculum and Textbook Board (NCTB)


This Board is an autonomous organisation under the Ministry of Education (MOE). It
performs the responsibility of renewal/modification and development of curriculum,
production and distribution of textbooks at primary, secondary and higher secondary
levels.

77
ii) National Curriculum and Textbook Board (NCTB)
This Board is an autonomous organisation under the Ministry of Education (MOE). It
performs the responsibility of renewal/modification and development of curriculum,
production and distribution of textbooks at primary, secondary and higher secondary
levels.

iii) Bangladesh Bureau of Educational Information and Statistics (BANBEIS)


This organization is responsible for collection, compilation and dissemination of
educational information and statistics at various levels and types of education. This
organization is the Apex Body of the Educational management Information System
(EMIS) of the country. It is also the National Coordinator of RINSACA (Regional
Informatics for South & Central Asia). Recently it has been assigned with the important
task of selection. Processing and computerization of data necessary for awarding
government subvention to all the private education institutions.

iv) Directorate of Inspection and Audit (DIA)


This Directorate is headed by the Director and is responsible for inspection and audit
aimed at improving the standard of education of the institutions at the secondary level.

Further more, a number of autonomous bodies have a share in the administration of


education. These are:

i) University Grants Commission (UGC)


The University Grants Commission is responsible for co-ordinating activities of the
universities and distributing government grants of them.

ii) National University


This is an Affiliating University responsible for academic control of all the affiliated
colleges offering courses in Degree Pass, Honours and Masters and for conducting
Bachelor Degree and Master's examinations.

iii) Education Boards


Seven Boards of Intermediate and Secondary Education are responsible for conducting
the SSC and HSC level public examinations.

iv) Madrasah Education Board


This Board is responsible for conducting public examinations from Dakhil to kamil
levels.

v) Technical Education Board


This Board is entrusted with the task of conducting certificate and diploma examinations
in technical education.

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PRIMARY EDUCATION

Table 1: Number of Primary Schools, Teachers and Enrolment-2005:

Type of School Institution No. of Teacher Enrolment


Govt. Primary School 37672 162084 9483891
Registered Non-Govt. Primary 19682 76566 3572686
School
Non-Registered Non-Govt. Primary 946 3456 158059
School
Other Primary Level Institution 22097 102683 3169081
Total (Primary) 80397 344789 16225658

SECONDARY EDUCATION

Table 2: Number of Secondary School, Teachers and Enrolment by Area/Location –


2005:

Area/ Location No. of School No. of Teacher Enrolment


All Area 18500 238158 7398552
Rural 15973 190214 5951058
Urban 2527 47944 1447494
Metropolitan Cities 717 18127 488323
Dhaka City 370 11941 286459

COLLEGE EDUCATION

Table 3: Number of College, Teacher and Enrolment by Area/Location- 2005:

Area/ Location No. of College No. of Teacher Enrolment


All Area 3150 90401 1367246
Rural 2155 56516 529312
Urban 995 33885 837934
Metropolitan Cities 270 9403 306755
Dhaka City 173 5674 161222
UNIVERSITY EDUCATION

Table 4: Number of Universities, Teachers and Enrolment by management:

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Year Management No. of University No. of Teachers Enrolment
Public 17 5241 92562
2001 Private 22 2205 27245
Total 39 7446 119807
Public 17 5467 92152
2002 Private 41 2948 34432
Total 58 8415 126564
Public 21 6101 104736
2003 Private 52 4543 44604
Total 73 10644 149340
Public 21 6462 112327
2004 Private 53 4883 70589
Total 74 11345 182916
Public 21 6852 115929
2005 Private 53 3487 91648
Total 74 10339 207577

Note: (1) Two public universities i.e. National University and Open University are
non- teaching universities. Enrolments of these universities are not included.

80
TECHNICAL & VOCATIONAL EDUCATION

Table 5: Number of Institutions, Teachers and Enrolment by type & management


-2005:

Types of Institution No. of Institute No. of Teacher Enrolment


Polytechnic Institute (Govt.) 37 1189 17836
Polytechnic Institute (Non- Govt.) 97 465 9682
Technical College (Govt.) 64 792 8548
Commercial College (Govt.) 16 68 3683
Glass & Ceramic Institute (Govt.) 1 10 174
Graphic Arts Institute (Govt.) 1 16 255
Survey Institute (Govt.) 2 17 557
Technical Training Centre(Govt.) 13 359 4867
Textile Institute (Govt.) 6 45 856
Textile Vocational Centre (Govt.) 28 331 5097
Agricultural Training Institute 12 112 7103
(Govt.)
Agricultural Training Institute 47 150 7285
(Non- Govt.)
SSC (Voc) (Non- Govt.) 1224 7511 98458
HSC (B. Management) (Non- 1180 6120 79935
Govt.)
Total 2728 17185 241336

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PROFESSIONAL EDUCATION

Table 6: Number of Professional Education Institutions, Teachers and Enrolment


by Type & Management -2005:

Type of Institution No. of Teachers Enrolment


Institutions
Leather Technology College (Govt.) 1 15 435
Textile Technology College (Govt.) 1 31 628
Law College (Non- Govt.) 70 625 17787
Medical College (Govt.) 15 1218 11731
Dental College (Govt.) 1 56 358
Dental College (Non- Govt.) 8 198 782
Nursing College (Govt.) 1 18 252
Homeopathic College (Govt.) 1 27 486
Homeopathic College (Non- Govt.) 29 442 14684
Unani/Ayurvedic College (Govt.) 2 32 312
Unani/Ayurvedic College 14 124 1288
(Non-Govt.)
Nursing Training Institute (Govt.) 39 232 3324
Nursing Training Institute 5 29 515
(Non-Govt)
Art College (Non- Govt.) 7 54 407
Music College (Non- Govt.) 2 20 120
Total 223 4152 60063

82
 AGRICULTURE SECTOR OF BANGLADESH

Bangladesh Agriculture at a Glance:

Total family : 17,600,804

Total farm holding : 15,089,000

Total area : 14.845million hectare

Forest : 2.599 million hectare

Cultivable land : 8.44 million hectare

Cultivable waste : 0.268 million hectare

Current fellow : 0.469 million hectare

Cropping intensity : 175.97%

Single cropped area : 2.851 million hectare

Double cropped area : 3.984 million hectare

Triple cropped area : 0.974 million hectare

Net cropped area : 7.809 million hectare

Total cropped area : 13.742 million hectare

Contribution of agriculture sector to GDP : 23.50%

Contribution of crop sector to GDP : 13.44%

Manpower in agriculture : 62%

Total food crop demand : 23.029 million metric ton

Total food crop production : 27.787 million metric ton

Net production : 24.569 million metric ton

83
Introduction:

The economy of Bangladesh is primarily dependent on agriculture. About 84 percent of


the total population live in rural areas and are directly or indirectly engaged in a wide
range of agricultural activities. Agriculture contributes about 32 percent to the country's
GDP, about 23 percent of which is contributed by the crop sector alone. About 63 percent
of the labor force is employed in agriculture with about 57 percent being employed in the
crop sector.

The scope of modern agriculture has been widened significantly. Although agriculture
used to be originally defined as the cultivation of land for producing crops only, now-a-
days, any applied activity through proper utilization of natural resources which relates to
the production, development, preservation, processing, marketing and extension of not
only crops but also other agricultural commodities such as fish, meat, eggs, forest
products, etc. is universally accepted within the purview of agriculture. According to the
above definition, crop production, animal husbandry, fisheries, forestry, etc. are integral
components of agriculture. But, crops undoubtedly constitute the largest and most
important sector of Bangladesh agriculture. Although overall agriculture encompasses the
development of crops, livestock, fishery, environment and forestry, separate policies on
fisheries, livestock, as well as environment and forestry have already been formulated by
the respective ministries. In this perspective, Ministry of Agriculture has formulated this
policy document in order to provide proper guidelines for various development activities
relating to crops which are the largest sector of agriculture. As expected, policies related
to crop production and marketing together with minor irrigation, seeds, fertilizers and
agricultural credit got prominence in the document. Since crop sector plays the major role
in Bangladesh agriculture and gets the top most importance in various agriculture related
programmes of the government, this policy document for the development of crop sector
is, therefore, titled as the National Agriculture Policy.

In Bangladesh, it is possible to reduce rural poverty and raise the living standard of
common people by establishing agriculture as a profitable sector. It is, therefore,
necessary to reorganize and develop the agricultural production system into a more
dynamic and commercially profitable sector. In this context, the primary goal of the
National Agriculture Policy is to modernize and diversify the crop sector, in other words
the entire agricultural system, through initiation and implementation of a well-organized
and well-coordinated development plan.

The following opportunities and constraints prevailing in the agriculture sector have been
taken into consideration with a view to framing and implementing an effective agriculture
policy:

Opportunities

• Agriculture sector is the single largest contributor to GDP.


• Crop production system is highly labor intensive and there is an abundance of
labor supply in the country.

84
• Agriculture is the largest source of employment for skilled and unskilled labor.
• Favorable natural environment generally exists throughout the year for crop
production.
• Wide range of bio-diversity exists for different crops.
• Different crops and agricultural commodities are the main sources of nutrition,
including protein, minerals and vitamins.
• Agricultural commodities have comparatively higher value added than non-
agricultural commodities.

Agricultural land:

The total land area of Bangladesh is about 14.4 million ha, of which about 66.6% is
available for cultivation. Depending on the flooding depth, the land is categorized as
highland (20%), medium highland (35%), medium lowland (20%), lowland (8%) and
very lowland (1%). Based on physical environment which are relevant to land use, the
land is divided into 30 agroecological zones and 88 sub-regions.

All land areas are not suitable for all types of crops. Seasonally flooded land is suitable
for rice cultivation but the use of HYVs is limited to areas with relatively shallow flood
depth during the kharif season. Deep flooding for long periods limits land use to a single
low yielding, deep-water rice crop. Most upland crops are grown in well-drained land.
Boro is planted in poorly drained soils throughout the dry (rabi) season where irrigation
can be provided and where no flooding will occur before the harvest of the crop.

Agricultural land use in coastal areas is limited to wet season cropping because of high
dry season soil salinity and lack of suitable quality irrigation water. Cropping intensities,
therefore, are low in coastal areas. Intensive cropping with HYVs is commonly practiced
under high to medium highland with assured good quality irrigation water. Total cropped
area is about 13.4 million ha, with more than 170% cropping intensities. Areas under
single, double, and triple cropping are 3.5, 3.7 and 0.99 million ha, respectively. Rice
alone covers about 80% of the total cropped area, of which HYV's share is about 50%.

Agricultural land is fragmented into small pieces because of the large number of farm
holdings. Total number of farm holdings is about 19 million; the average size of a
holding is about 0.5 ha. In form, each holding consists of a few pieces of land which
generally range from 0.1-0.2 ha

Production of major crops:

Bangladesh is endowed with a climate favorable for the cultivation of a wide variety of
both tropical and temperate crops. Though nearly 100 different kinds of crops are
presently grown in Bangladesh, rice is the principal one which grows in all the three crop
growing seasons of the year and covers about 79 percent of the total cropped area of
about 13.4 million ha. High yielding varieties cover more than 50 percent of the total rice
area. Other important crops are wheat, jute, potato, oilseeds, pulses, tobacco, cotton,

85
sugarcane, fruits, and vegetables. Crops in Bangladesh are grown both under rainfed and
irrigated conditions. However, rainfed agriculture is dominant, since nearly 70 percent of
the net sown area is dependent upon rain as a source of water for crop production.
Traditional practices, local varieties, and low levels of inputs and management are
associated with rainfed agriculture. Productivity in general is low, and year to year
fluctuation in production is large. Both moisture deficiency and excesses of rain
contribute to instability in agricultural production.

Irrigated agriculture is usually associated with improved technologies like HYV's, high
fertiliser doses, and improved management practices. Consequently, the productivity of
irrigated agriculture is high, and more or less stable with an assured water supply.

Crop Production Policy:

Although the intensification of food grain production, especially rice-based production


system is apparently profitable from the farmers’ point of view, this approach has
appeared to be harmful in protecting the land productivity. At present, rice covers about
75 percent of the cultivated land in Bangladesh. Area coverage by other crops are as
follows: pulses (4.64%), wheat (3.92%), oilseeds (3.77%), jute (3.71%), sugarcane
(1.23%), potato (1.11%), fruits (0.84%) and vegetables (1.39%). The production system
dominated by a single crop (i.e. rice) is neither scientific nor acceptable from the
economic point of view. It is, therefore, necessary to increase the cultivation and
production of other crops. However, considering the increasing demand for food grains
and with a view to ensuring food security, production of rice will continue to get priority
in the food grain production programs. In order to increase rice production, supportive
programs will be taken to raise per hectare yield through the use of modern technology
and improved cultural practices along with the increased use of HYV seeds.

In Bangladesh, only 4.14 percent of net cultivable land remains as current fallow which
means that there is hardly any scope for increasing cultivable land. Currently, cropping
intensity is around 185 percent. Thus, the only possible option for increasing agricultural
production is to increase both the cropping intensity and yields simultaneously. In this
respect, policies adopted by the government are to:

• Take supportive programs for inter-cropping in a field instead of single cropping;


and
• Take appropriate measures in reducing the gap between potential yield and
farmers’ realized yield of different crops to raise the present level of production
significantly.
• Crop diversification is one of the major components of crop production policy.
For the overall development of crop sector, special emphasis will be given to crop
diversification program under the crop production policy. The government
policies in this respect are as follows:

86
• Area under wheat has meanwhile reached at 0.8 million hectare. Given the
potential for expanding wheat acreage, efforts will continue to encourage farmers
to grow more wheat.
• The production of maize has shown prospective results in last two years. Maize
has also gained popularity as human food side by side with the poultry feed.
Public sector procurement of maize has been introduced like rice and wheat in
order to encourage farmers in maize cultivation. The efforts for increasing area
and production of maize will be strengthened.
• The program for increasing area and production of other crops, e.g., potato,
pulses, oilseeds, vegetables, fruits and spices will gradually be extended under the
crop diversification program.
• Production of different cash crops including jute, cotton will be increased and
efforts will be made to expand their multiple uses.
• Special development programs will be taken with a view to increasing production
of potential crops suitable for the coastal areas and the hill tracts.

As a matter of fact, increased crop production depends on good quality seeds, efficient
irrigation management, and use of balanced fertilizers and availability of credit in time.
In accordance with the free market economy, the important task of agricultural input
distribution has largely been shifted to the private sector. Despite its beneficial effects in
general, the privatization process has given rise to considerable inefficiency in some
cases, such as, marketing and distribution of minor irrigation equipment and fertilizers. It
is alleged that the privatization process has also been accompanied by non-availability,
price rise, smuggling and quality degradation of fertilizers. Under this situation the
government will seek to:

• establish and consolidate the distribution system for irrigation equipment,


fertilizers, seeds and credit in the light of farmers’ need; and
• Ensure responsibility and accountability of the private sector through
strengthening of the relevant legal framework and its enforcement.
• The production of crops, especially aman crop is heavily damaged every year due
to the inadequate soil moisture regime prevailing in drought affected areas. To
combat this situation government has adopted the following policies:
• Supplementary irrigation will be ensured in severe and extremely severe drought
affected areas.
• Location specific (including hill tracts) suitable crops will be identified with
respect to technological and economic parameters and appropriate strategies will
be pursued for cultivating those crops.
• Measures will be taken to minimize post-harvest losses by introducing appropriate
technologies.

Since agricultural production is very expensive and risky, often it is not possible for the
farmers to grow crops profitably at the individual level due to the shortage of required
labor and capital. Therefore, government will encourage the formation of self-motivated
cooperatives for producing and marketing agricultural commodities which should ideally

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succeed in mobilizing adequate resources (including labor and capital) for more
production, income and equity.

Role of Agriculture in Bangladesh Economy:

The economy of Bangladesh is primarily dependent on agriculture. About 84 percent of


the total population live in rural areas and are directly or indirectly engaged in a wide
range of agricultural activities. The agriculture sector plays a very important role in the
economy of the country accounting for 31.6 percent of total GDP in 1997-98 at constant
(1984-85) prices. The agriculture sector comprises crops, forests, fisheries and livestock.
Of the agricultural GDP, the crop sub-sector contributes 71 per cent, forest 10 per cent,
fisheries 10 percent and livestock 9 per cent. The sector generates 63.2% percent of total
national employment, of which crop sectors share is nearly 55 %. Agricultural exports of
primary products constituted 10.4% of total exports of the country in 1997-98. In the past
decade, the agriculture sector contributed about three percent per annum to the annual
economic growth rate.

The agriculture sector is the single largest contributor to income and employment
generation and a vital element in the country’s challenge to achieve self-sufficiency in
food production reduce rural poverty and foster sustainable economic development. The
Government has therefore accorded highest priority to this sector to enable the country to
meet these challenges and to make this sector commercially profitable.

88
CHAPTER THREE

“WEAKNESS”

89
 POVERTY IN BANGLADESH

Poverty is an economic condition in which one is unable to enjoy a minimum standard of


living. It is a state of existing in amounts (of earnings or money) that are too small to buy
the basic necessities of life. The visible effects of poverty are malnutrition, ill health,
poor housing conditions, and illiteracy. The impoverished people suffer from
unemployment, underemployment and lack of access to resources that restrict their
opportunities to earn living.

A simple unidimensional definition of poverty followed in Bangladesh during the 1980s


was the level of food consumption that provides calories of energy below what was
required. Indirect estimates of the proportion of people in poverty were made according
to the following method. First, a bundle of food providing the specified level of nutrition
(2,112 kcalories and 58 grammes of protein per capita per day) was identified based on a
compromise between cost and consumer preference. Next, the families with a per capita
income below 1.25 times the cost of the specified food bundle were classified as
moderately poor, and families with per capita income below 85% of the threshold income
for moderate poverty as extremely poor. This method was applied basically for
measuring the incidence of poverty in rural areas. For urban areas, the threshold level of
calorie consumption for measuring the incidence of poverty was slightly higher. Also the
threshold level of calories per person per day was changed in different times under
different policy considerations. The data used for estimates on incidence of poverty in
this methodology are generated by Household Expenditure Surveys (HES) conducted
periodically by the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS).

According to the BBS estimates, people living under the poverty line in rural areas in
1995-96 accounted for 47.1% and rural people in extreme poverty ie, those living under
hardcore (absolute) poverty line comprised 24.6%. The corresponding figures for urban
areas were 49.7% and 27.3% in that year. BBS in 1995 used a 'Cost of Basic Needs'
method to measure the incidence of poverty in Bangladesh and identified two layers - the
poor and the absolutely poor. According to this method, 35.6% of the country's
population was absolutely poor and the poor accounted for 53.1%. A multi-dimensional
approach to poverty takes into account a range of quality of life variables such as
nutrition, health and sanitation, security, housing, access to safe drinking water,
education, life expectancy, access to resources, participation and institutional capacity to
cope with crisis. In 2000, Bangladesh was ranked 132nd in terms of these and other
related parameters integrated into human development index (HDI).

Continued poverty in Bangladesh may be attributed to many factors including population


pressure, limited per capita natural resource endowment, illiteracy, extremely small
amount of per capita arable and forest land, poor health and sanitation services,
environmental degradation, deforestation, excessive dependence on agriculture, natural
calamities, large-scale deprivation of the women folk, and ill governance.

Following the Partition of Bengal in 1947, the government of Pakistan adopted a policy
of discrimination against East Pakistan. It patronized role of private sector in

90
development in West Pakistan, for which it also used more of the resources of the whole
country, while development in East Pakistan remained dependent mainly on public sector
with disproportionately smaller allocations. Industrialisation in West Pakistan took place
at the cost of deprivation of the province in the East, which continued to have an
economy based largely on traditional agriculture. In 1958, the income of an average
individual of East Pakistan was 74% of that of an average one of West Pakistan.

East Pakistan demonstrated a long-term poverty trend, which extended in independent


Bangladesh, too. In 1985, the income of an average Bangladeshi was 40% of the income
of a Pakistani, 19% of that of a Thai and 7% of that of a South Korean. There is another
more remarkable aspect of the long-term trend in poverty in Bangladesh, a large
proportion of the population at the lower end of the income distribution scale of the level
of living today is substantially below what it was 50, 100, and 150 years ago. In 1830s,
the agricultural wage rate was 6 kg of rice. In 1880s, it was slightly over 5 kg. In 1930s a
day's agricultural wage could buy 5.5 kg of coarse rice and the figure was almost the
same even in the beginning of the 21st century. But the terms of trade between industry
and agriculture within the economy deteriorated for a farmer or an agricultural labor
implying that an average person in rural Bangladesh is worse off today as compared to
the earlier periods.

Much of the sufferings of the people of Bangladesh are associated with the devastation
caused by the war of liberation in 1971. At least one third of the national wealth of
Bangladesh was damaged in one year and the economy faced severe difficulties in its
aftermath. The nation, although with the help of foreign aid, had to bear the cost of
rehabilitation of ten million refugees and twenty million internally displaced people. The
global economic crisis, the price-hikes of food, fuel and fertilizer and increasing burden
of the deficits in balance of payments hit the economy very hard. Crop failure and
disruptions in flow of food aid to the country in 1974 aggravated the situation and pushed
the country to near-starvation. The process of pauperization was intensified and
according to some estimates, people below the poverty line in Bangladesh reached 83%
in 1975. In 1981-82, the figure was 74% and only later, the incidence of poverty started
to decline. The economy, however, was in stagnation and suffered a new setback because
of the damages caused by devastating floods of 1987 and 1988. The bumper crop
harvests following the floods contributed to a high growth rate in 1988-89 and in the
successive 2-3 years although there had been no sustained improvement in the poverty
situation.

In the 1990s, millions of people faced the dehumanizing effects of acute material scarcity
because of inconsistent distribution and under-utilization of land, lack of command of the
poor over land and non-land resources, technological backwardness, disparity in income
distribution and political upheaval. With a per capita income of approximately $386
(1999-2000), Bangladesh remains one of the poorest, most densely populated, and least
developed nations especially characterized by pervasive poverty in both rural and urban
areas. Nearly half of the country's population lives below the poverty line. Majority of its
people lives in rural areas where problems of inequality and unemployment are growing
rapidly. Gini ratios in rural and urban areas in constant 1963/64 prices were 0.340 and

91
0.375 respectively in 1973/74, 0.362 and 0.365 in 1985/86, and 0.384 and 0.444 in
1995/96.

As the economy of the country is predominantly rural, the government of Bangladesh had
been undertaking and implementing rural development and poverty alleviation activities
since long. These activities include different sectoral and programme components such as
rural co-operatives, credit, irrigation, livestock and fisheries development, rural
industries, area development, infrastructural development, input distribution and training.
Rural development programmes was given importance in all five-year plans in varying
degrees to promote overall development of the rural poor.

Bangladesh Rural Development Board (BRDB) as the major government agency


undertook a series of rural development programmes with the objective of reducing
poverty through village-based co-operatives, human resources development, expanded
irrigation schemes, improvement of physical infrastructure, increase in agricultural
production, and creation of employment opportunities for the rural poor. Some of the
poverty alleviation programmes implemented in the government are establishment of
cluster villages (1988-93), institutionalization of vulnerable group development project
(1990-92), implementation of Upazila Resource Development & Employment Project
(URDEP), skill development training and assistance for self employment.

Government agencies such as the ministry of health and family welfare, BSCIC,
department of social services, directorate of women affairs, local government engineering
department, directorate of agriculture, directorate of livestock, and department of
fisheries also have a large number of different poverty alleviation projects. Moreover,
non-government organisations (NGOs) run a remarkable number of target-oriented
programmes and projects to improve the socio-economic conditions of small and
marginal farmers, assetless poor and distressed women. Notable among these
programmes are the group-based microcredit programmes of grameen bank, brac, asa,
proshika and other local and foreign NGOs, the government initiated programmes like
Swanirvar Bangladesh and Small Farmers Credit Project and donor funded special
projects like Rural Finance Experimental Project, Bangladesh Swiss Agricultural Project
and NORAD projects for small entrepreneurship development.

Also there are some traditional but less focused programmes of poverty alleviation in the
country. These are food for work programme, Food for Education, Pension for Elderly
People, Vulnerable Group Development, Housing for the Poor and Homeless and the
programme of providing insecticides and high yield variety of seeds to rural farmers. The
government has undertaken development initiatives to expand the area of non-agricultural
activities in order to create more employment opportunities. All these have to some
extent increased the entitlement of the poor, their social and economic awareness and
empowerment. These programmes, however, had contributed little to improve the
poverty situation in the country. The BBS revealed that the incidence of poverty at the
national level was 47% in 1996 and could be reduced to 44.7% in 1999. Poverty
alleviation, therefore, remains a challenge requiring a proper planning to combat it and a
high level of commitment to implement the plans with skill and integrity.

92
 LOW LITERACY RATE

The literacy rate in Bangladesh is very low, with significant disparity between female and
male literacy rates. However, with the inception of Universal Primary Education
program, the literacy rates have been going up. The education system is broken down into
4 levels, primary from grades 1 to 5, secondary from grades 6 to 10, higher secondary
from from grades 11 to 12, and tertiary.

In the 1990s there were about 50,000 primary schools enrolling over 50 million students.
There were about 9000 secondary institutions. The five years of lower secondary (grades
six through ten) concluded with a secondary school certificate examination. Students who
passed this examination proceeded to two years of higher secondary or intermediate
training, which culminated in a higher secondary school examination after grade twelve.
Higher secondary school was viewed as preparation for college rather than as the
conclusion of high school. Development efforts in the late 1980s included programs to
provide low-cost vocational education to the rural populace.

In Bangladesh the overall literacy rate (7 years and above) is about 44.3 per cent (1995),
where the female literacy rate is 28.5 percent and the male literacy rate is 50.4 percent.
The gap of literacy rate between the urban and rural areas is very wide - 36.6 percent in
rural and 63.0 percent in urban areas.
Access to primary education over the last 20 years has increased steadily. The gross
enrolment rate has risen from nearly 60 percent in 1980 to 73 percent in 1990 and 96.5
percent in 2000. In absolute numbers, in the last two decades, primary education
enrolment has more than doubled from 8.2 million to 17.6 million. The current estimate
of net enrolment rate has also narrowed to a ratio of 51 to 49 between boys and girls. The
rate of dropout in primary school has gone down from 60 percent I 1990 to 35 percent in
2000. The achievement in enrolment has been made possible by legislative support,
provision of physical facilities massive social mobilization and increased to 62,117 in
2000 of which, government primary schools were 37,677 (61 percent of total primary
schools). Over 15,000 full primary schools have been added since 1990. This increase
reflected government’s policy to establish school in unschooled areas with participation.
In addition, full or partial primary level education is also offered in High Schools,
Madrasahs, Kindergartens, Satellite Schools, etc. The number of these institutions was
14,692 in 2000.

The rate of adult literacy in Bangladesh according to population census was 25.8 per cent
in 1974, which increased to 29.2 per cent in 1981 and to 35.3 percent in 1991. The inter-
census average annual literacy growth rates were 1.78 per cent (1974-81) and 1.92
percent (1981-91), while the population growth rates were 2.35 per cent and 2.17 per cent
respectively.

93
 CORRUPTION

Since independence in 1971, Bangladesh very unfortunately witness rise of corruption


and political notoriety in the society, irrespective of whichever party or regime came in
power.

When a political system is corrupt, not only the political leaders are benefited, the
benefits may go to the political cadres of all strata of the parties, especially the party in
power.

The party leaders attain the higher post in the government, assume greater responsibility,
and enjoy more privileges. The party cadres at different level also share the privileges.
They get the contracts; get the tenders, selected for employment, preferred for admission,
promotion, training at home and abroad.

Beaucracy is also benefited by corruption. They also took the advantages of corruption in
the political system. They take undue promotion, unhealthy privileges and participate in
underhand negotiations. The government employs to the lowest level take the advantage
of the system.

The businessmen also take the privilege of the corrupt system. They procure orders in
illegal ways, bypass taxes, compromise with the quality of goods and of works, they
patronize the parties and take advantage in exchange. They themselves enter into politics,
purchase the seats and purchase the voters.

The media also compromise and they don´t maintain the neutrality and they speak in the
light of their political affiliation.

The Judiciary is also afflicted. The appointment is compromised. The promotion is


manipulated. They lost their judgment and they give verdict in favour of their political
interest.

The universities become sit of politics rather the seat of academic exercise. The teachers
are more interested in discussing politics than principles. Getting good score in exams is
more a matter of political connection than a matter of merit. The recruitment in faculty is
also dictated by political menuaver than academic excellence.

After 1/11, when the present interim started arresting the politicians, most of them were
from BNP, AL appreciated the move of the new government. When the CTG started
arresting a few leaders of AL, AL tried to explain to the public that government is trying
to balance the sheet. BNP took the move as an attempt by the new government to crush
the party.

General public was also under the illusion that the new government is more anti-BNP
than anti-AL. The illusion was created more because of the speeches of the Chief of

94
Army where he expressed his intention to declare Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman
as the Father of the Nation and set the history in its true form.

The new government continued its arrest spree and more and more AL leaders were
arrested along with BNP leaders, few businessmen and some beaucrates. Government
reiterated its stand that it is against all sorts of corruption by the politicians or by anybody
else. As the advisers told the politicians are the leaders of the country, they are mainly
responsible for the corruption prevailed in the country and they had created the
environment for others to compel to adopt the corruption for them.

Government gradually increased its pressure on more powerful two of the former female
Prime Ministers, as well as sons of former Prime Minister Khaleda Zia were also
arrested. .

Quickly after arrest of Awami League leader and former Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina,
most of the senior leaders in that party started discovering conspiracy theory behind such
arres and trial.

Praising Bangladesh´s interim government´s anti-corruption drive, American


commentator Emily Wax wrote an opinion editorial in prestigious newspaper The
Wahington Post on October 3, 2007.

Wax wrote, "corruption was ingrained in social fabric that even the Bureau of Anti-
corruption accepted a bribe and Bangladesh persistently ranked top most corrupt country
in the world."

He continued, "Now, two former Prime Ministers, rival politicians who have dominated
the countries politics for 16 years are behind the bar. They are awaiting trials for
siphoning off millions of dollars from the Government. Also incarcerated on graft, tax
evasion and corruption charges are 170 members of the ruling elite, along with an
estimated 15000 political underdogs, local government officials and businessmen."

Commenting of massive arrest of politicians and others on corruption charges, Emily


Wax wrote, "the arrests this year are unprecedented for South Asia Region, a reputation
for widespread impunity when it comes to thievery in Government corruption. It is
completely unthinkable in SA that a country´s demigods are now in jail."

Quoting Iftekher Jaman, Executive Director of Transparency International, Bangladesh


chapter, Wax wrote, "For most people what matters is daily life and corruption is so deep
rooted her that there has to be a painful transition. But in the long terms, it has to happen
´."

Bangladesh is in 7th position in Transparency International Corruption Perception Index


[CPI] report for 2006-2007 with the score at 2. Previous year Bangladesh was in 3rd
position with the same score. Before that from 2001- 2005 Bangladesh had consecutively
in no 1 position for 5 years. In 1996, Bangladesh had score 1.2. It takes 10 years for

95
Bangladesh to come to the score 2 where score 3 is considered for a country to be against
corruption. Among the Saarc Countries Bangladesh is again at the bottom. Then Pakistan
with 2.4, Nepal 2.5, SriLanka 3.2, India 3.5, Bhutan 5.0. On the better end, at the top are
Denmark, Finland, NeoZeland with 9.4 score, Singapure and Sweden 9.4 score, UK 8.4
and USA 7.2.

Transparency International report is prepared by the Berlin – based Transparency


International. The CPI of 2007 was prepared from the 14 surveys conducted by
internationally renowned 10 independent bodies.

According to various scoops in local and international media, Bangladesh may again get
into the top of the most corrupt nations in the TI report of 2007-2008, as because silent
corruption has increased significantly during past sixteen months. There are even
allegations of high profile corruption in various sectors as well as extraction of ransom
from the innocent people either by the members of law enforcing agencies or their agents.
But, some of the critics, challenging the legitimacy of Transparency International report
say, this prestigious organization is not represented by neutral people at least in a number
of countries. Many of the TI boses in different countries belong to so-called civil society,
which are mostly packed by either oxthodox opinists or partisan analysts. Whatever the
argument may be, it is well understood that TI reports are already recognized by various
governments in the world as genuine source of information. There are even allegations
that mostly syndicates of corrupts are spending substantial amount of money in defaning
Transparency International in order to altimately supress the notorious face of corruption.
For Bangladesh, Transparency International report turned one of the mightiest tools for
political parties in attacking opponents with the published fact sheet on rise or level of
corruption. It was even observed that people and party involved in one of the most
corrupt governments in Bangladesh are regularly quoting TI report on Bangladesh to
show that during their tenure corruption didn´t reach such worrisum status.

96
 INADEQUACY OF INFRASTRUCTURAL FACILITIES

A survey on business scenario has revealed that business activities in district level are
being hampered due to inadequate infrastructure, financing facilities and information.

Industrialisation is not possible without infrastructural development. Developed


infrastructure, uninterrupted supply of electricity, export aid scheme, availability of
modern technology, trained manpower, increase of assistance to specialised technical
personnel and compliance with the buyers' requirements have to be ensured. The main
problems of our infrastructure are inadequacy of roads and highways, bridges and
culverts, and insufficient supply of electricity and gas in the industrial belts. For the
growth of business, we have to build a coordinated system of transportation. Ours is a
country of rivers. To utilise this facility, we have to give importance to waterway
transportation to increase trade with the neighbouring countries. The railways needs to be
improved to facilitate easy transportation of containers between Dhaka and Chittagong.
Now only 10 per cent of the containers are transported through the railways. The sea-
ports do also need to be equally developed to facilitate trading. Of the total export-import
trade, of the country, about 85 per cent are now handled at the Chittagong port. But this
port suffers from negligence in loading-unloading and low productivity of the labourers,
besides other problems. The problems are caused due to harassment in the name of trade
unions. The caretaker government, however, addressed the issue to increase efficiency by
about 30 per cent.

The survey also said without giving importance to business concerns in the district towns
it is not possible to expedite the economic growth of the country. Power and Participation
Research Centre (PPRC) with the support from Katalyst, a project promoting small and
medium enterprises (SMEs), conducted the survey in seven districts -- Bogra, Rajshahi,
Rangpur, Faridpur, Jessore, Comilla and Sylhet. Presenting the findings of the survey at a
workshop, Executive Chairman of PPRC Hossain Zillur Rahman said the government
should reform the SME policy and recognise local businesses as SMEs. The workshop
was also attended by Mir Nasir Hossain, president of Federation of Bangladesh
Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI), Shahidul Alam, director general of
BIAM, Prof Masuda M Rashid Chowdhury, vice-president of Saarc SME Forum, and
Prashant Rana, general manager of Katalyst.

The survey also found that businesses at local level depend on the local government
bodies and government institutions for infrastructure facilities, utilities and services that
are vital to production, quality control, marketing and overall operation of the enterprises.
"But, the government institutions are weak in providing basic services related to business
promotion to the enterprises," it said. It also revealed that administration people charged
informal fees in issuing licenses and permits and VAT or tax collection. The survey
revealed that 30.49 percent units received regular electricity supply while 63.3 percent
suffered from frequent power failure. According to the survey, security is quite
vulnerable as businesses face rampant theft, robbery, and extortion. Of the total
respondents, 86.65 percent want guarantee of security of their businesses.

97
While giving opinion on the potentiality of new business in their areas, 49.7 percent of
the local entrepreneurs did not find the potentiality 'so bright' while 22.7 percent found it
'fair' and 22.2 percent were silent over the issue, it said.

The entrepreneurs want to see an increase in industrial facilities including infrastructure


development, availability of gas and electricity, end to extortion and red tape, reduction
of customs duty and availability of industrial capital at lower rates to boost their business,
the survey added.

 TIME AND COST OVERRUNS

(A) Time Overruns


It has been observed that most of the projects in Bangladesh are not implemented within
the time specified. As a result the benefits of the projects are delayed and in most of the
cases benefits are eliminated. Table 2 reveals the situation in respect of time overruns in
Bangladesh during 1987 88 as per annual review by implementation Monitoring and
Evaluation Division (IMED), Ministry of Planning, Government of Bangladesh.

Table: Time Overruns

Duration of Delay No. of projects


1 – 5 years 96
6 – 10 years 38
11 – 15 years 12
16 – and above years 5

(B) Cost Overrun


Actual costs in most of the cases exceeded the planned costs and as such the benefits of
the projects are out weighted. A situation in respect of the cost overrun in Bangladesh
during 1987-88 as per annual review by IMED is presented by Table-3 below:

Table- Showing Cost overruns

98
Cost overruns in % No. of
projects
100 – 200% 17
200 – 300% 7
300 – 400% 6
400 – 500% 1
500 – 600% 2
600 – 700% 3
over 700% 6

It has been observed that time overrun and cost overrun were mainly due to time
consuming and lengthy procedure in project approval; delay in the appointment of project
staff, especially foreign consultants; cumbersome and slow moving procedure for
procurement of materials and services, delay in releasing the fund, delay in the clearance
of imported goods due to cumbersome customs formalities; scarcity of critical
construction materials in the country; lack of cost control, and lack of interagency
co-ordination.

99
 GOVERNANCE CHALLENGES IN BANGLADESH

1. Confrontational politics: The problem in political governance in Bangladesh mainly


has to do with the limited accountability and transparency within the country’s political
parties. Lack of democratic processes and values have also given rise to intolerance
within and between political parties. Although democracy is firmly entrenched,
confrontational politics have been a significant source of potential instability and political
uncertainty that has adversely affected Bangladesh’s international reputation and
investment climate.

2. Lack of judicial independence: Although the formal structure of the judicial system is
in place in Bangladesh, judicial independence has not yet been fully established. Despite
completing the legal process, the judiciary is yet to be separated from the executive. The
core institutions of formal justice lack independence, and politicization of the justice
sector agencies has been one of the key causes for the deterioration of the judicial system;
political parties in power have often appointed their loyalists in the judiciary. The
political parties, once in power, were unwilling to relinquish their influence over the
judiciary and initiate the process of judicial reforms, particularly the separation of the
judiciary from the executive.

3. Constraints in the public sector: The performance of Bangladesh’s public service is


constrained by

* A top-down culture that leaves little space for mid-level officials to exercise
independent authority
* Inadequate compensation of public officials
* The absence of a system of rewards and penalties
* The lack of professional development training and other incentives to improve
performance and accountability
* The lack of systematic and merit-based policies for recruitment
* Inadequate safeguards for actions taken in good faith
* Frequent reassignments often driven by political and other considerations
* Pressures faced by reform-minded officials in creating space for change in government
agencies
* A lack of uniform public demand for reforms

4. The lack of progress in administrative governance is made more acute by the failure of
successive governments to pursue the reform agenda. The Public Administration Reform
Commission and several other studies have identified areas that undermine the efficiency
of the bureaucracy. These include

* Outside interference in administrative decision making


* Politicization of the civil service
* Nepotism and favoritism
* A lack of delegated authority to mid-level and local-level public officials
* A lack of public scrutiny of public administration

100
* A lack of citizens’ demand for improvements in public administration

5. Corruption as a Key Governance Problem: There is unanimous acceptance that the


single-most telling indicator of poor governance in Bangladesh over the years has been
the high incidence of pervasive corruption, broadly defined. The off-the-record payments
by firms cumulatively result in 2–3% of gross domestic product (GDP) being lost
annually. A study done by the Bangladesh Enterprise Institute in 2003 found that 60% of
big firms surveyed viewed corruption as the top constraint to their work. The 2004 World
Development Report stated that the volume of illegal payments by firms is almost 3% of
their total sales. These are significant numbers which point to the failure of previous
governments to tackle the culture of corruption.

6. The increasing politicization of public institutions is a major constraint. This has led to
an erosion of trust in government and political leaders by the citizens. The oversight by
the traditional arms of government, the Parliament and the judiciary is weak. The lack of
mechanisms for citizens’ voices to be heard is another binding constraint. While the
media and NGOs have indeed provided access to citizens to voice their concerns
regarding mismanagement and poor service delivery, what is missing is an institutional
and formalized mechanism to convey bottom-up concerns of corruption to policy-makers.

101
 HUMAN RIGHTS SITUATION IN BANGLADESH

The emergence of Bangladesh as an independent state was the result of a fight against
violation of human rights in different ways. People's struggle for establishing
fundamental rights by brushing aside anomalies is always there in this part of the world.
But unfortunately, the polity is yet to overcome the barriers to human rights.

Despite enough potentials for progress, the country is still faced with abject poverty,
which is perhaps the most powerful enemy of human rights. Incidences of violence
surrounding want and discrimination are common. Instead of being the protector of
human rights, the state i.e. the government machinery is playing the role of tyrant. A
promising but burdensome population is not in a position to assert the due rights and
resist the wrong doing by the violators whoever.

Even after the democratisation process began through a popular upheaval in 1990, the
people have to encounter with repressive police force, supremacy of the criminals in
many areas, corrupt officials, isolated elected regime, backdated and slow legal system
and all that, which are not conducive to having ideal human rights situation.

The human rights phenomenon has also been overwhelmingly circumscribed by extra-
territorial actors as well as regional and global hegemony that frustrate people from
enjoying their divine rights. It is hardly possible to implement those pro-people policies,
which can anyway affect the interests of international players. So, people's aspiration is
either suppressed, or they are not allowed to think and speak freely from a paradigm other
than that of supranational powers.

With the existing structure favouring the already powerful elite having nexus with the
vested quarters hooked into the criminal domain, the people living in suffocating
conditions generally cherish mere pious wishes about what good things should be done,
no matter whether they understand critical analysis of human rights or not.

It is the people or the individuals who are the neglected elements in the established
politics and socio-economic activities. Because, they have been treated as subalterns in
the domineering rule of the 'descendants' of king or queen in the port-colonial era. The
power structure is highly centripetal that does not uphold the true spirit of the populace.

If human rights mean public interest or, say, people-oriented development, this is
theoretically guaranteed but pragmatically hindered in the present-day order. The people
need freedom to exercise their rights in an egalitarian manner. The process of
democratising society has been rather sop polluted that any headway from the plight
could not be attained easily. Yet there is ample scope for improvement in the status of
human rights, provided the indigenous ideas are really promoted to find out ways and
means to correct the situation.

102
 LAW AND ORDER SITUATION

Bangladesh is abundant with constitutional provisions and statutory laws guaranteeing


diverse freedom. However, the existence of a number of repressive laws undermines the
'de jure' pledges of freedom. Sadly, the 'hard earned democracy' has not yet obtained an
institutional shape. Bangladesh's politics remain confrontational and inimical to reform.
There is no system of accountability within the existing system of governance. The
frequent use of the law-enforcing agency for political purposes and the alarming trend of
torture, rape and death in the custody of the law enforcers vitiate the democratic regimes.
The country's political and legal systems are in a crisis. Criminalisation of politics,
political elitism, ignorance of the law, a sense of resigned tolerance from society,
corruption in all administrative sectors and strata have all infected Bangladesh. Rampant
corruption at all levels of society and government continued to dash hopes for
improvement in the human rights situation and to thwart efforts to tackle widespread
poverty and political instability. Torture including rape in custody, continued to be
reported, and impunity for past human rights violations persisted.

Acts of impunity testify the failure to bring justice those responsible for human rights
violations. Impunity can and does occur in various sectors of state life the bureaucracy,
the law enforcement agencies and even in the judiciary. All these institutions play a role
in the human rights of the citizens of the country - the right to shelter, food, and
sanitation, the right to life, liberty and dignity and the right to justice, being some
examples. When corruption and impunity are joined hand in hand in these government
sectors, the human rights of the citizens are at risk. One example of this is the use of
Section 54 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, which allows police to arrest any person
without warrant or a magistrate's permission. There are several conditions and factors
attached to this law, but many are arrested every year for no reason at all and have to
bribe the police in order to restore freedom.

Bomb Blasts:

One of the newest violations that were faced is the series of bomb blasts that occurred in
2005. Along with this came acts of militancy carried out by an underground group calling
themselves Jamaa’tul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB), who also claimed responsibility for
the blasts. They launched the attack to institute their brand of ‘divine law’ and attacked
most of the subordinate courts and the Supreme Court premises to carry home their
message that the present man made laws did not give justice top the people and that the
present judicial system did not follow ‘religious’ teachings/principles and thus failed to
serve common people.
In 2006 the Government arrested almost all the leaders of JMB. After several trials
various trial courts have found many of the JMB leaders guilty and awarded death
sentences. Some of these cases have been confirmed by the Appellate Division of the
Supreme Court and are pending for execution. The government also arrested their wives
and young children, which raised the question of human rights violations from the other
end.

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Impunity by Law Enforcement Agencies:

Torturing and killing people by law enforcement agencies are not an unfamiliar
phenomenon in South Asia. Bangladeshis experienced such brutality and killing during
its struggle for self-determination and liberation in the late 60’s till its freedom in 1971,
by the then Pakistani government. Unfortunately, this was repeated in the independent
country against political opponents by the Jatiya Rakkkhi Bahini (JRB), which came into
force on February 1, 1972, just after the country was liberated on 16 December 1971 and
continued operations until October 1975 after the killing of Sheikh Mujibar Rahman, the
founder President of Bangladesh in a coup on August 15,1975.The JRB became infamous
for extra-judicial executions of about 30,000 leftist opponents (as claimed by the victim
organizations) till its absorption into the Army by a gazette notification dated 4 October
1975.
In March 2004 the ‘elite force’ of the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB), was created by
amending the Armed Police Battalions Ordinance, 1979 and enacting a new law, namely
the Armed Police Battalions (Amendment) Act, 2003. As per the law, it is assigned to
investigate any offence on the direction of the government and has exclusive jurisdiction
in this regard. It can investigate and work for all security purposes. As an elite law and
order enforcement agency it has a special focus on curbing organized crime and
eliminating ‘top criminals’. Since the inception of RAB in March 2004, some new words
like ‘Crossfire', ‘encounter’ etc. has been introduced in human rights vocabulary. The
Government uses the term ‘crossfire’ to mean the death of the apprehended person during
gunfights between a criminal group and RAB or police at the time of their intervening
acts of duty. Thus the death of the alleged criminal is justified as a result of ‘crossfire’.
The term ‘death in encounter’ is used in other countries to mean the same thing, but the
term ‘crossfire’ is preferred by law enforcement agencies in Bangladesh. The sinister
connotation associated with the word demonstrates utter powerlessness in the face of
extra judicial killings taking place in Bangladesh. There are also an alarming number of
deaths in RAB custody and few of these can be interpreted as explicitly political. The
police have also been killing people in the name of ‘crossfire’ for last several months.
According to Odhikar’s documentation, 738 people were reported killed in ‘crossfire’
between June 24, 2004 and December 31, 2006.
There is no legal definition for ‘extra-judicial killing’. Death delivered by a member of
the law enforcement agency that cannot be accounted by law or the Constitution and
therefore, falls outside legal rules or judicial process may be termed ‘extra judicial’, or
literally murder by the State agencies. Many of the killings occurred when the alleged
criminal or the criminals were in RAB custody. Some people argue that the extra- judicial
killing of hardened criminals helps mitigate ‘terrorism’ and improves law an order. They
argue that after the formation of RAB and other auxiliary forces like Cheetah and Cobra
(of the police), the law and order situation has improved and common people are
apparently happy with the outcome. However, there is no systematic study in this regard
and the conclusions are drawn mainly from the perception of the urban population and
information covered by media.
Torture and inhuman treatment by the law enforcers are rampant in the country. Some
examples of torture by law enforcers may be quoted. On May 18 evening last, police
arrested one Sajidur Rahman from the corner of Markaja Masjid near Gaibandha railway

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station. On May 21, police allegedly found his dead body hanging by a Lungi (traditional
Bangladeshi dress worn to cover lower part of the body) from the bars of the window of
the custody room. After the incident, a protest rally of the local people was instrumental
in the arrest of Investigation Officer (IO) Abu Yusuf. Police beat an old woman to death
at Savar in Dhaka on July 2, 2006.Sub-Inspector (SI) Mokhlesur Rahman kicked Nayan
Banu to death as she failed to give information about the whereabouts of her son Badsha
Mia, allegedly accused in an abduction case.
Around twenty people were killed by the law enforcers on January 4 and 23 and April 6
and 13, 2006 at Kansat in Chapainawabgonj as the deceased persons took part in a large
demonstration demanding adequate supply of electricity to enable them to cultivate their
lands for agriculture purpose. Later Officer-in-Charge (OC) Shahabuddin Khalipha of
Shibganj Police Station (PS) was arrested on January 18 last for shooting at people and
killing them.

Law enforcers made blanket arrests in connection with bomb blast cases and detained a
large number of people. Besides, many men and women are in detention without trial.
Mubarak Hossain bin Hashem was sent back home in December 2006 from Guantanamo
Bay Prison by the US authorities after he was arrested in 2001 as a terror suspect from
Afghanistan and detained there for five years. Immediately on his return to Bangladesh,
he was arrested and put in remand for interrogation by the intelligence agencies. Odhikar
expresses its concern at such detention in custody for interrogation of a person who spent
five years in illegal detention abroad and was released due to efforts of the International
Red Cross Society and the Bangladesh Red Crescent Society.
Section 54 the Criminal Procedure Code enables police to arrest without warrant on
several grounds, one of which is the highly debatable ‘reasonable suspicion’. According
to an Odhikar documentation, 220 persons in Kotwali Police Station, 45 in Lalbagh, 33 in
Newmarket, 24 in Kamrangir Char, 07 in Hajaribagh, 79 in Dhanmondi, 134 in Ramna
and 15 in Shahbagh (New) in Dhaka City were arrested under this legal Section between
01 January – 31 August 2006.
It is a fact that criminality is not merely a vice of an individual but has deep social,
economic, cultural (that includes law and constitution) and political roots as well. The
neo-liberal economic policy of the State denies any role of the state in improving the
social and economic reality of their citizens and instead installs market institutions over
and above the welfare of the people. Therefore, State is hardly capable to undertake any
social and economic policy that could undermine socio-economic basis of criminal
behaviour. In the absence of such role, State justifies itself by ensuring ‘security’ of the
citizens by dealing criminality in extra-judicial manner. Extra- judicial killings can bring
no peace and does not help to eradicate ‘terrorism’. For the human rights defenders it is
not enough now to simply oppose extra judicial killings but raise the fundamental
concern about the transformed nature of the state internationally, where Bangladesh is
only a minor example mirroring the behaviour of the strong global and regional actors.

National Security Law:

The State of Bangladesh has put its people under the threat of national security laws
enacted by various governments, which allow police to arrest without warrant in the

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name of curbing militancy and maintaining state security. To add to this, the immediate
past government adopted Telecommunication Amendment Law 2006, a telephone
tapping law, empowering the security agencies to overhear telephone conversations of
ordinary citizens. This law is designed to affect the privacy of conversation and violate
civil rights.

 ACCESS TO WATER

The issues related to water and irrigation is also major concerns. Privatisation of water
and the need to defend community water rights is becoming pressing even for
Bangladesh, which is known to be rich in sweet water resources. The deep tube well and
irrigated agriculture has created severe environmental and ecological destruction and
blamed for the arsenic poisoning of the large number of population. The margin where
introduction of technology threatens life and livelihood has not been drawn in
constitutional and legal terms
The different dams built in the Indian part of the regional rivers like Farakka and
Tipaimukh, have created acute water shortage and drought in many parts of Bangladesh.
These dams have cast a direct impact on the irrigation and production of Bangladesh’s
agricultural sector. These dams are responsible for an indirect economic war against the
life and livelihood of poor and marginalized people in Bangladesh. The more alarming
and threatening issue is – the Indian government has planned to build new dams on more
rivers through a River Linking Project within the next couple of years. As a ‘growing
regional power’ of the South Asia region, India is implementing these projects without
consulting its neighbours like Nepal and Bangladesh and also violating the international
river laws. This is also an issue of the security of Bangladesh and Nepal, as the small
states of the region.

 WOMENS RIGHTS

The status of women’s rights has never been even satisfactory in Bangladesh. Women in
Bangladesh are exposed to the vulnerability of domestic violence, attacks with acid and
other corrosive substances, trafficking, divorce, dowry violence and murder by their
husbands and others. A majority of incidents of domestic violence are linked with dowry
demands. The Government has encouraged negotiated settlements by amending the Code
of Civil Procedure (CPC). Therefore, the possibility of punishment of criminals in cases
of repression against women would be less in the future. Recently a High Court Division
Bench has set free the accused husband for the murder of his wife, Nilufar, although the
trial court earlier sentenced him to life imprisonment.

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 SERIOUS BRAIN DRAIN IN BANGLADESH

The term "brain drain" designates the international transfer of resources in the form of
human capital i.e., the migration of relatively highly educated individuals from the
developing to developed countries.

This phenomenon, in the terminology of development economics refers to the loss of


high quality manpower, which was once productively employed in the native country.
The last decade has seen an increase in the international mobility of highly skilled,
talented individuals in response to the expansion of the knowledge economy
accompanying globalization.

This international movement of human capital can be identified, in practice, as the


movement of scientists, doctors, educationists, engineers, executives, and other
professionals across frontiers. These are people with special talents, high skills and
specialized knowledge.

The irony of international migration today is that many people who migrate legally from
poor to richer lands are the ones that the Third World Countries can least afford to lose:
the highly educated and skilled. Since the great majority of these migrants move on a
permanent basis, this perverse brain drain not only represents loss of valuable human
resources but could prove to be a serious constraint on the future economic progress of
Third World nations.

Expenditure on education in Pakistan and other developed and developing countries:


Research undertaken both in developed and developing countries reveals that for an
increase in output, the quality of labour is more important than the quantity. A clear
picture emerged if one looks at the experience of different countries. No country with
educated and technically trained human resource is poor and no country with a
predominantly illiterate, untrained human resource is rich.

In general the quality of human resource is much more critical in economic development
than the availability of natural resources. Japan is a country which has almost no mineral
or energy resources but has high economic productivity because of highly literate, trained
and an efficient workforce. Rapid progress of the East Asian countries is largely
attributed to their excellent system of education.

Unfortunately, in Pakistan we have not paid due attention to the general education of the
masses and as a result, the country is far behind than others of the region in education
sector. According to official sources, the current literacy rate in Pakistan is 51.6 per cent
where female literacy rate is 39 per cent while that of male is 64. It means that two
women out of every three and one man out of every three men are illiterate.

The following table shows the national actual expenditure on education in Pakistan as a
percentage of the GDP.

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The present government has realized the importance of education and consequently the
Higher Education Commission (HEC) has been established with a view to guiding higher
education policy and assisting universities and degree awarding institutes in the pursuit of
quality education at the seat of higher learning, both public and private.

Its objective is to work with the academic community for qualitative and quantitative
improvement of higher education and to aid in the socio-economic development of
Pakistan. Besides, the Education Sector Reforms (ESR) are designed with a view to
increasing access, enhancing equity and improving quality at all levels of education.

Developed countries immigration policies: In order to accumulate human capital, many


industrialized countries are aiming to attract highly skilled immigrants. Among them are
the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong
and Australia. The policies that encourage such movement target highly trained science
and technology personnel, particularly from developing countries.

These trends are likely to have been confirmed in the 1990s in the face of the increasingly
"quality-selective" immigration policies introduced in many OECD countries. Since
1984, Australia's immigration policy had privileged skilled workers, with the candidates
selected according to their prospective "contribution to the Australian economy".

Canadian immigration policy follows along similar lines, resulting in an increasing share
of highly educated people among the immigrants selected; for example, in 1997, 50,000
professional specialists and entrepreneurs immigrated to Canada throughout the world
with 75,000 additional family members, representing 58 per cent of the total immigration.

In the US, since the Immigration Act of 1990 - followed by the American
Competitiveness and Work Force Improvement Act of 1998 -, the emphasis has been on
the selection of highly skilled workers through a system of quotas favouring candidates
with academic degrees and/or specific professional skills. For the latter category, the
annual number of visas issued for highly skilled professionals (H-1B visas) increased
from 48,000 in 1989 to 116,000 in 1999, the totality of this increase being due to
immigration from developing countries, especially India.

The latest Gallup survey indicates that not only qualified professionals and university
graduates want to leave the country, but even semi-skilled and unskilled workers want to
migrate in search of better prospects. About 62 per cent of the adults interviewed for the
survey expressed the desire to go abroad to work, while 38 per cent say that they would
prefer to settle permanently outside the country. This shows that many Pakistanis are
gradually losing faith in the country's economic future.

According to a study the ratio of researchers and scientists, who opted for working in
foreign companies, is higher in the research wing and breading and genetics institutions
of the agriculture department. In some departments of agriculture research institutes, over
30 per cent seats are vacant, mainly due to the fact that the researchers left the country for

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better opportunities. And, due to ban on recruitments, since 1993, these vacancies could
not be filled.

Remittances vs brain drain: No doubt that we are getting foreign remittances as a result of
brain drain. But could we think that the money they send could be a better substitute in
exchange of the services what they are extending for others and becoming a source of
their rapid economic, scientific and technological development. If proper infrastructure is
provided to them within the country, Pakistan could earn manifold than the money is
received as foreign remittances.

Factors responsible: Economic factor, however, is not the sole factor involved in brain
drain. There are also other factors that contribute to the migration of skilled people to
developed countries from developing nations. One of the important factors behind the
acceleration of brain drain is low income at home. Skilled and educated people expect
some kind of reward. But when they get no reward for their hard work and labour, they
feel disappointed and frustrated.

The value placed for a scientist with an advanced level degree in Pakistan is Grade 17,
with a salary that is even insufficient to meet the basic requirements of a family.
Grabbing the opportunity, the advanced countries take away these people by offering
them lucrative incentives.

In addition to low economic incentive, promotion process in developing countries is also


very slow. It takes them several years to get promotions. Apart from that, mutilation of
merit is a routine feature. Non-deserving people bypass the deserving ones. All the
frustrated scientists and skilled people feel compelled to leave the native country in
search of better opportunities.

In Pakistan's case, professionals who are going abroad are mostly government servants
and belong to the scientific community. These are the people who complain about the
general attitude of society towards professionals, particularly scientists.

An important determinant of the international migration of scientists and technology


experts is the availability of resources to conduct research and higher salary levels for
researchers in recipient countries. These are the things that facilitate the experimentation
and creative process. Unfortunately, the funds allocated for this purpose in developing
countries are very meagre, which often leads to the rusting of intellect. In Pakistan annual
average expenditure on education from 1997-98 to 2001-2002 has been 1.7 per cent of
the GDP.

The available information shows huge disparities in the distribution of resources for
science and technology, between developed economies and developing countries' GDPs.
According to UNESCO (2001), the developing countries that account for 78 per cent of
world population (and 39 per cent of world GDP) only contributed to 16 per cent of
global research and development (R&D) expenditure in 1996-97. In contrast, the

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developed economies with 22 per cent of world population account for some 84 per cent
of global R&D expenditure.

One of the major causes of brain drain is the growing frustration among the youth and the
non-availability of opportunities in the existing social set-up.

Implications: The implications of the brain drain phenomenon are disastrous. It entails
loss of strategic manpower from key positions. An outflow of such manpower creates
many dislocations. It seriously affects skill formation and involves the loss of money
invested in education and training. The loss of strategic manpower affects education,
research & training, infrastructure building, creative talent, present and future technology
and the entire intellectual milieu of a country and creates a growth retarding backwash
effect.

Trained and skilled people constitute a very scarce resource for poor countries. Losing
them sets development back in these countries. In fact, many countries, having lost their
best brains to the industrial world, have had to import expensive consultants from abroad.
Such a cycle of events sometimes represents a double loss. An economy spends its
precious resources to educate and train its people. Losing them to developed countries is
a form of reverse foreign assistance, from resource-poor to resource-rich countries.

Another important implication of the brain drain is that investment in education in a


developing country may not lead to faster economic growth if a large number of its
highly educated people leave the country. Also, efforts to reduce specific skill shortages
through improved educational opportunities may be largely futile unless measures are
taken to offset existing incentives for highly educated people to emigrate.

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 UNEMPLOYMENT IN BANGLADESH

Unemployment is a great concern in Bangladesh. Every year hundreds of thousands


student are coming out from college and university. Though it is one of the major
responsibilities of the Government to provide job to those young generation but the
Government is failed to meet the job demand among the large population. Only a tiny
fraction of total jobless is managed by different government offices and private
organization but a majority remain unemployed.

Historically for a long time British administration was the main cause of this problem.
After ending Mughol regime when British came in Sub continent (India, Pakistan,
Bangladesh) they started to do business, they exploited the sub-continent. They did not
establish any Industry which is helpful to remove the unemployment problem. Though
some Industry was made but all of them were placed in Indian Territory. So Bangladesh
region was neglected from the British period. After ending British rule in 1947 Pakistan
adopted the same rule they established all kinds of Industry in West Pakistan not in East
Pakistan. As a result of Pakistani monopoly rule we saw the freedom fighting war in
1971. After nine months continuous war it is divided and named East Pakistan as a
Bangladesh.

After 1971 Bangladesh has been facing political crisis badly. As a result no government
can take long term massive step to remove the unemployment problem. Within 37 years
Bangladesh has experience about eight new governments and two assassination incident
at the top level country leader. So now political crisis is one of the major causes of
unemployment problem in Bangladesh. Among others two major parties BNP and
Aowamileague are busy to gain only political power. None of these parties are trying to
do anything to solve the country’s major problem “UNEMPLOYEMENT PROBLEM”

Many Asian developing countries are the bright example in the World who is successful
to remove the unemployment problem successfully. Korea, Malaysia, Singapore are the
newest of them. They are growing rapidly because there is no Political crisis.
Government assured the foreign investor about political calm environment. So many
American, European and Japanese company are investing in those regions spontaneously.
As a result they are developing very fast. Bangladesh Government and political leader
should learn from those Asian countries.

Recent attitude and activity of political parties are very hateful to the common people. By
election if a party goes to power then another party cannot accept that, they do not go to
parliament they do not express constructive opinion in the parliament which is helpful for
common people. But they should not do it. May be there is some discrimination of the
election result but there are overall acceptation of the common people. To think about
greater welfare of the country they should keep patient, they should support the
Government they should assist the Government to take the long term strategy to remove
the unemployment problem.

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If we watch towards Japan, Korea, Malaysia what we will see? Due to Industrialization
they have changed a lot. Without Industrialization no nation can expect strong economic
basement and solution of unemployment problem. After political settlement the first and
foremost thing for Bangladesh is, to build up industry to remove the unemployment
problem. If they can assure the political calm and stable situation, then foreigner will
come to invest in manufacturing sector to build new industry. In this respect
Transportation, Road and Highway, Electricity should be reconstructed strongly
otherwise everything will be failed.

Specially Automobile and Electronics Industry are the major items to intensify a
country’s overall financial condition. Most of money is spent in these two sectors. Lot of
population can be employed in these industry. Because by surrounding a automobile or
electronics industry hundreds of supporting small industry will be built up. As a result a
lot of people will be employed. In this respect Government should adopt a strong and
strict policy about importing used car. After establishing automobile industry they should
ban import of all used car. Used car import is destroying the environment and
employment opportunity.

To intensify the overall industrialization our Ambassadors who are employed in different
countries specially Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore can help the Government to adopt
strong, effective, active and successful policy. Because they are well known with those
countries environment, government and people. They have practical and expert feeling
about the development policy in different sector of the respective country.

We have already wasted a lot of time. We don’t want to live as the poorest and neglected
nation in the world. We want our economic growth, our honor. We have a lot of
workforce and a lot of money in the Bank. But due to proper utilization and proper
development planning we are staying in back. In this regard Political leader, Intellectual,
Industrialist, Planner, Ambassador, Teacher Student and migrated generation in abroad
should contribute to achieve the country’s economic progress. If we can take proper steps
to obtain our economic growth, then we can remove our unemployment problem.

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 OTHER WEAKNESSES IN BANGLADESH

There are some other negative factors in Bangladesh as well which are as follows:

1. Poor & very inadequate technical bases

2. Lack of trained manpower

3. Very poor project planning

4. Data bank lacking & highly inaccurate

5. Poor general economic conditions & low per capita income

6. Size of market & buying capacities

7. Uncongenial legal framework

8. Weak & ineffective capital market

9. Inefficient monitoring of banking structure & banking policy

10. Absence of business ethics

11 Bangladesh is classified as “high risk” country

12. Low savings GDP ratio

13. Unhealthy distribution of income and concentration of most of the wealth of the
country in the hand of several thousands

14. Absence of social values and social justice with its serious erosion

15. Serious exploitation of society and country by educated people

16. Wrong conception about religion & week socio cultural institution, of which
family is the weakest

17. Cumbersome custom formalities

18. Very low contribution of service sector.

19. Imbalance between direct and indirect tax structure.

20. Very loose boarder and smuggling.

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21. Very wide trade gap that is unfavorable balance of trade & balance of payment
position (Export earning is about 40% import bills).

22. Ineffective balance of growth of agricultural & industrial sectors.

23. Initial industrial base was planned on the basis of different geographical
dispersion and market.

24. Inadequacy of basic, heavy and mother industries.

25. Irregular flow of foreign funds.

26. Lack of interdepartmental, inter ministerial coordination & ineffective sectoral


adjustment.

27. Serious problem of time and cost overruns of project implementation.

28. Lack of motivation in implementation of projects with serious snags.

29. Impacts of open market economy & formation of regional economic blocs.

30. Ineffective & corrupted banking structure.

31. High degree of propensity to incur unproductive expenses out of project funds
both in public and private sectors.

32. Trading mentality of entrepreneurs, lack of business farsightedness resulting into


interest towards painstaking industrial projects.

33. High degree of irresponsibility, callousness & indifference on the part of project
managers of public sector projects.

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CHAPTER FOUR

“OPPORTUNITIES”

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 INCREASING TREND OF INDUSTRIES

The contribution of the industry sector to Bangladesh economy has an increasing trend.
In FY 2006-07, the contribution of the industry sector to real GDP is 29.77 percent while
it was 17.31 percent in FY 1980-81. It is expected that this upward growth trend of the
industrial sector will help to achieve the national growth rate at 7 percent level. Among
the fifteen sectors identified for computing national income, the greater industry sector
includes five sub-sectors such as mining & quarrying; manufacturing; construction;
electricity-gas and water supply. . Among these sub sectors, the contribution of the
manufacturing sector is the highest. In FY 2006-07, the growth of the manufacturing
industry reached double-digit level like previous fiscal year. According to provisional
estimate, in FY 2006-07 the contribution of the manufacturing sector to GDP is 17.79
percent, which is 4.34 percent higher than that of the previous year. In FY 2006-07, the
growth rate in the manufacturing sector is estimated at 11.19 percent, which is 3.9
percent higher than that of the previous financial year. This trend in growth has
accelerated the pace of economic development in Bangladesh. This growth was propelled
by readymade garments and knitwear industry.

Table: Contribution of Manufacturing Sector in GDP and Growth Rate


(At constant prices of 1995-96) (Tk. in crore)

Type of 1999- 2000- 2001- 2002- 2003- 2004- 2005- 2006-


Industries 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
Small & 8659.3 9267.4 10699.6 10780.0 11496.0 12408.5 13551.5 14944.2
Cottage (5.8) (6.6) (7.2) (8.0) (7.45) (7.93) (9.21) (10.28)
Medium- 21708.6 23130.2 24194.1 25780.8 27572.03 29860.5 33268.2 37114.4
Large (4.4) (7.0) (4.6) (6.6) (6.95) (8.30) (11.41) (11.56)
Total 30367.9 32397.6 34174.2 36480.8 39068.8 42269.0 46819.7 52058.6
(4.8) (6.7) (5.5) (6.8) (7.1) (8.19) (10.77) (11.19)

In the face of challenges of open market economy and globalization, the government
believes that private sector-led industrial development could be one of the prime movers
of economic growth. Beside this, government, by now, has liberalized the trade regime
by introducing a range of reforms so that the entrepreneurs can set up industries and
operate them profitably without any misgivings. Meanwhile, the government has handed
over a number of SOE’s to the private ownership. In order to establish economically
viable industrial enterprises, the government has taken initiatives to set up Industrial and
Special Economic Zones so that the huge land area of these industrial zones is effectively
used to set a new trend for industrialisation that would facilitate creation of huge
employment opportunities. To further strengthen the process of industrialisation, the
government has identified the Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) sector as a priority
sector and also as an engine of industry. To attract foreign investment, all facilities to be
given to the potential investors were incorporated in the industrial policy. The
government took initiatives to formulate a separate SME policy to provide required

116
guidelines and strategic support to set up SME industries across the country. Guidelines
and strategies incorporated in the SME policy will be followed to establish SME
industries.
Over the last decade, a discernible change across the globe was evident in terms of
women's participation in socio-economic activities particularly in the sphere of industry.
The present industrial policy, therefore, attaches significant priority to the issue of
creating more women entrepreneurs and ensuring more participation of women
entrepreneurs in the process of industrialisation. For hygienic preservation and marketing
of Bangladesh agricultural products steps will be taken to make them frozen, pasteurized,
canned or turn them into dry food, so that all these locally produced commodities can be
exported round the year.

In this age of ICT, it is possible to provide accurate and rapid customer services by using
ICT for cost effectiveness and improvement of the quality of products. This is why,
providing encouragement to the intensive use of ICT on certain specific areas is another
important feature of the present industrial policy. It is visualised that the industry sector
that will be developing over the next decade would be able to gain 30-35 percent share of
GDP and also to absorb 35 percent of the labour force. To achieve this estimated growth
in the manufacturing sector, the present industrial policy has laid special emphasis on
strengthening efforts to establish agro-based and agricultural product processing industry,
together with steps to face the possible adverse situation in export-oriented RMG industry
and SMEs sector, to extend facilities to women entrepreneurs on priority basis, to set up
special economic zones in various regions, to market manufacturing products at a
reasonable price with quality of products comparable to the world standard, to arrange
environment-friendly production and to increase the productivity in the manufacturing
sector. The directions contained in the new industry policy will help in putting in place
planned expansion of industrialization and also achieve sustainable industrial growth on a
continued basis.

This will create a strong and potential base for economic development which will in turn
accelerate the process of poverty reduction and reduction of unemployment, create
employment opportunities as well as accelerate the overall economic growth of the
country.

The government took effective measures for the augmentation of the industrial growth
and diversification of the industrial sector. Currently, in the manufacturing sector local
textile, leather products, agro-based industry, bicycle and light engineering etc., are given
cash support to augment export. To boost up industrial investment, the nationalized
commercial banks have reduced the rate of interest from 10-12.50 percent to 9 percent in
the thrust industrial sectors, such as textile industry (including readymade garments),
agro-based industries, computer software and information technology, data export,
production of artificial flowers, frozen food, (including frozen poultry and meat), gift
items, 100 percent export oriented finished leather goods and jute goods, jewellery,
diamond cutting and polishing, oil and gas, cocoon cultivation and sericulture and stuffed
toys. The rate of interest has been reduced from 8-10 percent to 7 percent for pre-
shipment and packaging credit for export of RMG, frozen food and agricultural

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commodities. Besides, bank rate has been reduced from 7 percent to 5 percent to induce
reduction of interest rate of bank loans.

Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)

Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) by producing exportable surpluses of


commodities together with local value additions and creation of employment
opportunities, can make significant contribution to the economy of Bangladesh. Although
financing of SMEs in off-farm rural economic activities are largely dependent on equity
financing from personal and family savings, currently banks and financial institutions are
also coming forward to provide finance to this sector. As the large potential of
employment generation by SMEs has attracted attention of the policy makers, a range of
initiatives for channeling loans to SMEs are being taken.

The government has taken up programmes to provide financial assistance to expand


SMEs through commercial banks. Alongside the disbursement of loans, Bangladesh Bank
has taken up a scheme of Tk. 100 crore for refinancing the scheduled banks and financial
institutions against the loan given to SMEs. Presently, this scheme has been increased to
Tk. 200 crore. Beside this, IDA has provided US$ 10 million and government of
Bangladesh provided Tk 85 crore to Enterprises Growth and Bank Modernisation Project
(EGBMP). Moreover, ADB has finalised an agreement with Bangladesh bank to provide
additional US$ 30 million to this sector. These resources would strengthen the financing
programme of SME. This would result in employment generation in one hand and
enhancement of purchasing power of the poor on the other. Under this programme, the
financing capabilities of various financial institutions and banks have been enhanced and
up to June, 2007 Bangladesh Bank has disbursed Tk 453.91 crore for refinancing. Out of
this, the contribution of IDA and ADB was Tk. 125.28 crore and Tk. 77.38 crore
respectively while that of Bangladesh bank was Tk. 251.25 crore.

Activities of Bangladesh Small and Cottage Industries Corporation (BSCIC)


Bangladesh Small and Cottage Industries Corporation (BSCIC) is the prime mover
organisation of the government to help the entrepreneurs for promotion and extension of
small and cottage industries in the country in private sector. BSCIC is working through
64 district offices, 70 industrial estate offices and 183 project offices in the upazilas to
promote investment and production in the small and cottage industries sector in the
country. During FY 2006-07, Tk. 830.66 crore has been invested in this sector through
BSCIC, different banks and other financial institutions as well as in the form of own
investment of entrepreneurs. Out of this amount, the term loan was Tk. 366.07 crore. Side
by side, the entrepreneurs invested Tk. 240.43 crores as equity.

Tk. 13.13 crore have been disbursed as micro credit from BSCIC’s own management for
poverty reduction. Apart from this’ Tk. 210.53 crore has been invested by the private
entrepreneurs from their own fund for the establishment of industrial units in FY 2006-
07. The investment has created employment opportunities of about 0.92 lakh people in
FY 2006-07. BSCIC has 70 industrial estates to provide infrastructural facilities for
establishment of industries throughout the country.

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These industrial estates have been playing a significant role in the economy. Tk. 8089.91
crore has been invested in the 3394 industries established in these industrial estates which
in turn have created employment opportunity for 2.98 lakh people. These industrial units
have produced goods worth Tk. 19116.67 crore during FY 2006-07 of which goods of
Tk. 9535.67 crore have been exported. These units also paid to the national exchequer a
total of Tk. 1483.00 crore as revenue.

Pursuant to the policy of poverty reduction of the government BSCIC has been
implementing four poverty alleviation projects throughout the country. Under these
projects, a sum of Tk. 13.63 crore has been disbursed as micro credit in FY 2006-07. As a
result, 0.15 lakh employment opportunities have been created. BSCIC has established a
tannery industrial estate on 200 acres of land at Savar in Dhaka district. All the 195 plots
of this industrial estate have been allotted to 154 tannery industrial units in FY 2006-07.
It is expected that after the implementation of this project, the city dwellers will get rid of
environmental pollution created by the tannery units. BSCIC has been implementing two
projects at Cox’s bazaar and Khulna-Satkhira coastal areas to assist the salt growers of
the project areas with improved technology for the production and collection of salt from
the salt field. In FY 2006-07 the demand for salt was estimated at 13.00 lakh metric ton.
However, in reality, 10.65 lakh metric ton salts was produced against the target of 13.00
lakh metric ton due to unfavorable weather.

On going Reform Programmes in State Owned Industrial Sector:

In order to bring about improvement in the management system of state owned industrial
sectors the following programmes have been undertaken:
a. Gradual privatization of the financially insolvent entities under the State Owned
Industrial Sector;
b. Settlement of short term and long term liabilities of closed or privatized enterprises;
c. Reduction of losses through retrenchment of additional manpower and curtailment of
non-essential expenditure;
d. Ensuring record keeping of assets and liabilities and annual audit;
e. Enhancement of reward/punishment scheme for ensuring accountability at every stage;
and
f. Rationalisation of prices of goods/services consistent with market demand and cost of
production.

Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority (BEPZA)

There are 8 EPZs is Bangladesh namely Chittagong EPZ, Dhaka EPZ, Mongla EPZ,
Comilla EPZ, Ishwardi EPZ, Uttara EPZ, Adamjee EPZ and Karnaphuli EPZ. As of June
2007, 264 industries are in operation in the EPZs. Out of which 135 in Chittagong EPZ,
91 in Dhaka EPZ, 16 in Comilla EPZ, 03 in Uttara EPZ, 12 in Mongla EPZ, 03 in
Ishwardi EPZ , 03 in Adamjee EPZ and 01 in Karnaphuli EPZ.

The total investment in the EPZs upto June, 2007 stands at US$ 1132.26 million. During
FY 2005- 06, the total investment was US$ 112.89 million while during FY 2006-07 the

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investment stands at US$ 152.37 which is 35 percent higher than that of the previous
financial year. Exports from the EPZs for the last few years show an upward trend. Upto
2005-2006, a total of US$ 11.839 billion worth exports has been made from the EPZs.
The export target for the FY 2006-2007 was US$ 2 billion against which export to the
tune of US$ 2.064 billion has been made. The export target for FY-2007-2008 is set at
US$ 2.3 billion. The contribution to the national export from the EPZs in FY 2006-07 is
about 18 percent.

In addition to FDI promotion, export and employment generation, EPZs of Bangladesh


have also been making special contribution to the development of backward linkage and
supportive industries of the country. The enterprises within EPZs are required to procure
raw materials from the local market vis a vis 100% export oriented enterprises in local
market also supplies its products to EPZ enterprises. Therefore the development of
backward and forward linkage industries has been strengthened by the EPZ enterprises.
Now a days buyers are placing much importance on social compliance issues and EPZs
are also encouraging its investors to comply with the code of conducts and conditions. As
a result, working
conditions are getting improved gradually and the workers are benefited with better
facilities. BEPZA places much importance on environmental issues. The authority has
already taken steps to introduce five Central Effluent Treatment Plants (CETP) in five of
its EPZs in order to ensure maximum protection for the environment.

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 TEXTILE SECTOR OF BANGLADESH

After Liberation when country's traditional items of export could not yield expected
result, in late 70s the government and a section of entrepreneurs - young, educated and
dynamic, began to emphasize on development of non-traditional items of export. By the
year 1983, Ready-Made-Garment (RMG) emerged to be a non-traditional export oriented
sector most promising in the socioeconomic context of the country. By that time, those
entrepreneurs felt a necessity of sectoral trade body, non-government in nature, free from
traditional bureaucracy, to help the RMG sector and to boost up the foreign exchange
earnings of the country urgently needed at that time. Responding to that necessity, 19
(Nineteen) RMG manufacturers and exporters joined together and by their untiring
efforts got Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA)
incorporated on February 20, 1983, Today 2400 small and medium scale privately owned
garment factories, registered with BGMEA, spread in cluster over the EPZ and urban
areas of Dhaka, Chittagong and Khulna, are manufacturing ready-made garments of
varied specifications as per size and designs stipulated by the overseas buyers. Starting
with a few items, the entrepreneurs in the RMG sector have widely diversified the
product base ranging from ordinary shirt, T-shirt, trousers, shorts, pajama, ladie's wear
and children's wear to sophisticated high value items like quality suits, branded jeans
items, jackets-both cotton and leather, sweaters, embroidered wear etc.

Fetching only US $ 6.4 million in 1981, garment sector of the country has now become
an over 2.5-billion-dollar-foreign-exchange-earner, enjoying the status of 5th largest
garment exporter and largest shirt and T-shirt exporter to the EU and 6th largest apparel
exporter to USA. Bangladesh now exports ready-made garments to as many as 30
countries of the world with EU as the major importer, followed by USA, the largest
importing country.

Besides accounting for 66% of Bangladesh's total export earning in 1995, this sector is
employing about 1.2 million 1.2 million people of whom 90% are women. Ancillary
industries producing cartons, polybags, woven labels, buttons, sewing thread, strapping
band, gum tape etc. have emerged in large number with the growth of the sector. The
RMG industry has helped the growth of the sectors like banking, insurance, shipping,
hotel, tourism, road, transportation and railway container services etc. The sector in
which the RMG has helped created the maximum prospect in the country in the textile
sector - supply source of mother raw-material of RMG sector.

During the industry's early days in late 70s, RMG producers and exporters had to import
all fabrics and accessories. Through the passage of about one and a half decade, today the
situation has changed a lot. In 1995, RMG industry of the country used local accessories
around 70% of the total accessory requirement of the industry. Presently, around 80% of
required accessories like elastic, collarband, price ticket, metal clip, zipper, plastic clip,
cellophane tape, carton, hangers etc. are being supplied from local sources. Local supply
of other accessories is also increasing regularly. It can also be noted that we never can
look forward to having supplies of all trimming materials from within the country
because sometimes the producers have to import some accessories, according to buyers'

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preference, from some specific foreign suppliers. Dishonouring such conditions may
cause losing valuable buyers. Considering this point, a size of local accessory industry
capable to meet around 90% of the total demand is good enough to support smooth
development of the RMG industry. That means, in accessory industry, we are not long
way off. Both foreign and local capital are invested in the accessory industry.

But, though the CMT (Cutting, Making and Trimming) basis apparel sector has created
an export oriented captive market for over 2.5 billion yards of fabrics per year which is
increasing by not less than 20% each year, textile sector, rather capital intensive one,
requires foreign capital to flourish to successfully match the fabric requirement of the
export oriented RMG sector of the country.

If classified into knit and woven categories only, the story of knit fabric is far better than
of the other. In 1995, the industry imported 86% of its total required fabrics from
countries like China, India, Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand, Korea, Indonesia, Taiwan,
etc. Out of the total fabric requirement of the industry, usually around 16% is constituted
by the knit fabrics. Presently around 96% of the total requirement of woven fabrics and
around 35% of the total requirement of knit fabrics are imported by the export oriented
RMG industry.

It is not that fabrics are not produced in the country enough for the industry rather the
quantity of locally produced fabrics, conforming to the choice of the buyers in the global
market, is very negligible. In 1995, out of the local fabrics used in the industry, 4 million
meters of Garmeen Check (GC), a recently developed locally produced handloom fabric,
were used. Statistics show that presently the textile industry of the country is developing
in a way that earth two-year around 230 million yards of fabrics are being produced as
additional.

With WTO already installed and MFA in transition to be completely phased out by 2005,
the manufacturers and exporters of RMG in Bangladesh are awaiting to compete in a
greater context in the global apparel market. Country's talented entrepreneurs in the RMG
industry have achieved the highest growth rate during last several years, compared to
other industrial sectors, though almost 96% of woven and 35% of knit fabrics are
presently being imported from abroad. Countries, where production cost, if properly
engineered, is far below its competitors' for their natural endowment in supply of easily
trainable huge work force, will offer maximum benefits to the customers. Moreover, if
those countries enjoy sound local textile supply sources, they will do far better.

The country holds strategic location as the bridge between South and East Asian high
growth regions and links with other markets of India, Pakistan, Malaysia, Singapore, etc.
The country has given high priority to development of roads & highways, bridges, rail
roads, ports, telecommunication and other modern communication system, power supply,
eradication of poverty, restoration of law & order situation and political stability. Besides
the two export processing zones (EPZ) - one at Dhaka and the other at Chittagong, the
government has decided to set up a new EPZ in Gazipur near Dhaka to meet the

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increased demand for setting up export oriented industries by investors form both home
and abroad idea of setting up EPZ in private sector is also being mooted.

An extensive programme of incentives, to expedite investment in the country, are row in


place covering " No Ceiling for investment" Tax holiday up to 10 years "Tax-exemption
and duty-free importation of capital machinery and spare parts for 100% export oriented
industries" Residency permits for foreign nationals including citizenship "Easy capital
profit and dividend repatriation facilities" Double taxation avoidance "Tax-exemption on
the interest payable on foreign loans" Taka convertible on current account etc.

The country enjoys Most Favoured Nation status and has signed bilateral trade and
investment treaties with 16 countries in North America, Asia and Europe. Investors can
also take advantage of the generalized-system of preference (GSP) which allows duty-
free access to the European Markets. Since 1990, the Government has embarked on a
highly successful macroeconomic, stabilization programme with balance of payments
much improved, foreign exchange reserves and export earnings increased. Transparent
investment protection law perhaps in the country's best attraction for investors in its
open-door investment policy. The country has a very liberal investment climate. For
instance, it takes just three days for a foreign investment registration and there is no
discrimination between foreign and local private investors. Hundred percent foreign
investment as well as joint ventures with local partners are allowed. Specially for the
textile sector, as additional to the said facilities, policy for 25% export incentives has
been introduced to encourage the use of local fabrics in the export oriented garment
industry. With the possibility of further reduction in future, duty on cotton yarn has been
reduced from 15% to 7.5%, on textiles spares from 30% to 15% and on dyes from 60% to
30%. Raw cotton import is now duty-free. Foreign investment is particularly welcome in
our export-oriented textile industry.

The 51 million work force of the country is easily trainable. The price of labour is
competitive compared to our neighbouring countries, countries in South-East Asia and
Eastern Europe. The work force in one of the main advantages that Bangladesh is
enjoying and will continue to enjoy over a considerable span of time in the context of
international trade. Werner International has the comparative hourly wage rate in textile
for 1993 that shows that average rate for Bangladesh is most cost-effective among India,
Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Indonesia. The Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, China, Hongkong,
Japan, Korea and Taiwan. So, Bangaldesh enjoys and advantage in this respect.

A new generator of entrepreneurs has emerged in the country, specially with the
development of RMG, who are competent enough to shoulder the burden for mid and
upper-mid level management and are experienced in textile industry. Now, in
Bangladesh, organizations are recruiting more people with technical and professional
education than ever before. Therefore, scope of professional education has expanded.
Over 0.2 million Bangladesh students are studying abroad with majority in US. Local
universities and other private institutions are also offering different professional and
technical courses. These students, studying at home and abroad make up the pool of

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prospective technical and professional talent who will drive the economic growth of the
country.

I profoundly believe that the present rate of development in the overall textile sector in
the country will continue and the country will cross US dollar 4 billion before 2001 in
exporting RMG. If greater foreign investment takes place in the export oriented textile
industry, situation will be far better no doubt. As the formation of local capital is very
negligible as compared to the requirement in the Export oriented textile sector, foreign
investors are most welcome to come up and weigh the prospects awaiting for them in our
textile sector.

Fabourable investment policy framework, low rate of inflation, easily trainable workforce
and emergence of a new generation dynamic entrepreneur class, with the recent
development of infrastructure perhaps have made Bangladesh offer the best opportunity
for investment in textiles in south Asia. Investors from Singapore, South Korea, Hong
Kong, Japan and many of the European countries including United Kingdom, Germany
etc. now have been showing trend to move to cost effective labour supplying countries.
Had those investors been reached effectively, we believe, tremendous mutual benefit
could have been accrued.

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 INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

Information Technology Services in Bangladesh

Computerization:

Though the first main frame computer came to Bangladesh in 1964, but usage of PC and
its popularization actually started very late. Commercial application of computer was
initiated by Janata Bank in 1967 followed by Adamjee Jute Mills Ltd. in 1970. Several
large banks and private entrepreneurs in industrial sectors are the path makers of
achieving benefits from computer and computerized applications.

Bureau of Statistics and a few nationalized banks are the leaders in using computer in
government sector by processing data and information, while industrial concerns in
private sectors are the leaders in applying computer for their accounting, payroll and
inventory related applications. A joint survey by the Bangladesh Computer Council and
Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics, published in April 1999, has found that there were more
than 78,000 PCs in Bangladesh by the end of 1998 with more than 120,000 licensed
software marketed (BCC and BBS, 1999). However, it has been revealed from recent
survey that almost 90% of the computers are in Dhaka, the capital city. It is widely felt
that there has to be some policy for decentralization of these PCs to regions outside of
Dhaka. More than 72% of the computers are involved in some form of IT related
activities.

Very recently the government has withdrawn import duties from computer and computer
related peripherals. Due to withdrawal of taxes from computer, prices of computer and
computer related items dropped drastically and became affordable to general
communities. Even now, the scopes of computerization and effective application are
severely under-utilized due to many governmental policies.

Internet Services in Bangladesh:

Internet has a significant positive role in accessing information from different sources.
Until very recently, Bangladesh National Scientific Documentation Centre (BANSDOC)
was the only public sector institution providing Internet services to selected users, mainly
the research and educational institutes. There are several banks that link their branches
through Internet. Private Sector Internet services with limited facilities have been made
available in the capital city, Dhaka, since 1990/91.

The Internet came late in Bangladesh, with UUCP e-mail beginning in 1993. In June
1996, the government decided to allow private entrepreneurs to act as ISPs using VSATs
(Very Small Aperture Terminal). By July 1997 there were an estimated 5,500 IP and
UUCP accounts (Press, 1999) in the country. Internet Service Providers (ISP) offer
Internet services with bandwidth ranging between 65 Kbps and 2 Mbps through VSAT
(with hub station outside Bangladesh), Broadband and Zacknet downlink. In 1999, there
are about 22,000 account holders with 10 ISPs (8 in Dhaka and 2 in Chittagong) and the

125
total number of users ranged around 100,000, while in 2000, there are about 50 ISPs
providing Internet services to more than 250,000 Internet users. Recently the Square
Informatix has installed a VSAT hub station at Gazipur, near Dhaka, which is expected to
start functioning very soon.

Initially there were only a few UUCP (Unix-to-Unix Copy Protocol) accounts in the
country and then they were replaced by IP (Internet Protocol) accounts. At a later stage
low bandwidth 64 Kbps VSAT (Very Small Aperture Terminal) link became the main
Internet backbone of the country with 120 million people.

Bangladesh Telegraph and Telephone Board (BTTB) has already established a network
for high bandwidth Internet connectivity through offering commercial services. BTTB is
establishing a fibre optics backbone throughout the country and also has a plan to offer
ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network) service using the facilities of the already
installed digital exchanges in Dhaka and Chittagong cities. They have opened X25 and
X28 services in eight cities of the country and established Digital Data Network (DDN)
at Dhaka and four other cities. Through DDN they are going to offer IPLC (International
Private Leased Line Circuits), National (Point to Point High Speed data Circuits), Local
(Point to Point High Speed Data Circuits) and E1 Access from PSTN (Public Switched
telephone Network) to ISPs At present there are about 80 Independent (private) ISP
companies, including the government owned BTTB and many offline ISPs all over the
country. Now the Internet service has gone up to major towns of the country at district
level. By the year 2002 the number of internet users might have increased to over 300
thousand. Privately owned Internet browsing facilities are being expanded to cities and
towns in the form of Cyber Café by the ISPs

At the same time, several Telecentres/ Cybercafes are providing e-mail and Internet
services and they have increased the popularity of Internet usage and in a way the number
of Internet users in the country. It has been observed that students are the main clients of
these Telecentres. A telecentre opened by the SDNP (Sustainable Development
Networking Programme-A UNDP funded project) Bangladesh at the BIDS (Bangladesh
Institute of Development Studies- the executing agency) premises is offering free Internet
services to school and college students, including students from nearby slum areas, since
July 2000.

Anyone can install a VSAT with a simple permission from BTTB. Cost of VSAT
equipment are nearly US$ 40,000 and annual monthly lease fee to the Internet provider
costs around US$ 24,000 with an additional mandatory annual fee of US$ 3500 to BTTB.
Legal framework now also permits ISPs to float public share in the stock exchange. In
this aspect one should concentrate providing ISP service to small cities in Bangladesh,
where they don't have any ISP services. There are possibilities of using locally designed
long distant Micro Wave (using multiple wireless routers) and these links are now
available in Bangladesh at very reasonable cost- for access to remote areas. Straight line
of path (60 km range with 3 Mb access speed), each tower units cost approximately USD
2400. The difficult part of establishing an ISP here is to accommodate digital telephone
lines to start up an ISP business due to unavailability of enough Telephone lines within

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required time or in certain geographic areas and locations. Hence, remote wireless access
may be a better solution for Bangladesh. A typical ISP may need a minimum of 30
independent (telephone) hunt lines to start up a business.

The highest peak time charge (Internet usage fees) now is about Taka 1.50 (6:00 am to
6:00 pm) and the lowest, off peak time (10:00 pm to 6:00 am), charge is around Taka
0.20 per minute) depending on the ISP. Grameen Cybernet (an ISP) has the largest
number of subscriber base (about 6000) and the current bandwidth available now - what
local ISP's are providing, ranges from 64 Kbs to 2 Mbs (BOL Online Ltd. and Proshikha
are providing 2 Mbs access).

Sustainable development Networking Programme (SDNP), a non-profit ISP, is working


in the field of providing digital connectivity to academics, national and international
agencies and development partners. This project is financed by the UNDP and executed
by the Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies (BIDS). Utilising SDNP backbone,
Internet services are being extended to the remotest regions of Bangladesh through its
regional hubs and information centres.

Due to delays in decision making, Bangladesh could not obtain a link to the sub-marine
cable in the late 90s and also due to lack of persuasion from top level government
agencies the country domain name ‘bd’ is still not functioning properly. In the absence of
a ccTLD (country-code Top Level Domain), the email and Internet users are suffering
from bandwidth wastage and in this way cost of the browsing is increasing and speed of
e-mail communication is decreasing. Bangladesh Govt. has now decided to have
international submarine cable connection by 2003 and actions are being taken
accordingly. This will facilitate quick browsing with less cost.
An Information Technology village is going to be set up very close to Dhaka. The
government has already made 18 acres of land available for setting up this IT village.
This would be similar to the Software Technology Parks in India. The entire
infrastructure, including high-speed telecommunication facilities (2 Mbps link) would be
provided. These would enable the small companies to move into buildings with readily
available facilities. Since this is going to take at least two years, a decision has been taken
to initially set it up in an existing building in Dhaka (Chowdhury, 1999).

Information Technology Policy of the Government:

The present Government of Bangladesh (GOB) declared IT (Information Technology) as


a thrust sector. IT national policy has been formulated. This Policy aims at building an
IT-driven nation comprising of knowledge-based society by the year 2010. In view of
this, a countrywide IT-infrastructure will be developed to ensure access to information by
every citizen. It is expected to facilitate empowerment of people and enhance democratic
values and norms for sustainable economic development by using the infrastructure for
human resources development, governance, e-commerce, banking, public utility services
and all sorts of on-line IT-enabled services. Ministry of Information Technology (MOIT)
will be created with the prime responsibility of assisting socio-cultural-economic
development of Bangladesh through the use of Information Technology.

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National Council of Information Technology (NCIT) will be created as the field
organization of MOIT to implement the decisions of the MOIT, as well as to act as the
liaison between the IT Industry and the Government.

Information technology Organizations in Bangladesh:

Bangladesh National Scientific and Technical Documentation Centre (BANSDOC) was


established in 1962. Govt. of Bangladesh announced the National Science and
Technology policy in 1986. BANSDOC with Library Association of Bangladesh (LAB)
prepared a draft of National Science and Technology Information Policy (NASTIP).
BANSDOC has the responsibility to co-ordinate and channelize national information
resource. The On-line Library and information network- Bangladesh National Scientific
Library and Information Network has been established in 1998 (Chandel and Begum,
1998).

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 FISHERIES

An Overview of Fisheries Sector:

Bangladesh has extensive and huge water resources all over the country as small ponds,
itches, lakes, canals, small and large rivers, and estuaries covering about 4.34 million
hectares. The culture fisheries include freshwater ponds of 0.15 million ha, and coastal
shrimp farms of 0.14 million ha. The country has a coastal area of 2.30 million ha and a
coastline of 714 km along the Bay of Bengal, which supports a large artisanal and coastal
fisheries. In addition to this, the country has 166,000 km2 EEZ in the Bay of Bengal. The
fisheries sector of Bangladesh is highly diverse in recourse types and species. There are
about 795 (including 12 exotic species) species of fish and shrimp available in the both
fresh and marine waters of Bangladesh. Exports were valued at USD 307 million. In
2000, the fisheries sector contributed about 6% to its national GDP, involving a fulltime
equivalent of at least 5.2 million people, or 9% of the labour force. Moreover, the sector
functions as a safety net for income and food for the rural poor, provides an important
source of animal protein and essential elements for all consumers, and is particularly
important for poor in both rural and urban areas.

Total production was estimated at 750,000 mt from inland capture fisheries, 850,000 mt
from inland aquaculture, 95,000 mt from coastal aquaculture (on shore aquaculture;
major species is shrimp and a few finfish) and 589,000 mt from marine fisheries. Both
inland and marine capture fisheries are in declined by around 5% and 1% per annum.
Current levels of marine fisheries production are only being maintained by significant
increases in fishing effort, which if not contained will contribute to greater reductions in
production in the long term. However, aquaculture has a major impact, growing by +/-
14% per annum over the decade. Specific areas of growth include carp (20% per annum)
and shrimp (3% per annum). By contrast, it is essential to explore the incremental fish
production from initiating off-shore Mariculture in the Bay of Bengal.

Marine Resources:

Bangladesh is one of the resourceful countries with its wide range of marine aquatic bio-
diversities. There are about 1093 marine aquatic organisms where 44.35% are finfish,
32.23% shellfish, 15.10% seaweeds and only 8.32% are other organisms including
shrimps. The details in number of species and their percentages are shown in the table
below:

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Group of the Organisms No. Of Species %
1 Finfish 486 44.35
2 Sharks, Rays, Skates and Dolphin 21 1.92
3 Shrimps 36 3.30
4 Lobster 6 2.01
5 Crabs 16
6 Sea Turtle 3 0.27
7 Crocodiles 3 0.27
8 Squid and Cuttle Fish 7 0.64
9 Shellfish (Univalves & Bivalves) 350 32.23
10 Seaweeds 165 15.10
Total 1093 100

Status of Marine Aquaculture:

This sub-sector of fisheries has mainly one type of culture system like on-shore
aquaculture. The on-shore aquaculture is generally called in Bangladesh as Coastal
Aquaculture.

The Coastal Aquaculture:

The coastal aquaculture has been developed significantly in the last decade particularly
the shrimps (monodon and indicus sp.) culture in medium to high saline water and prawn
(machrobrachium sp.) culture in less saline areas. In addition, a small production of
mangrove crabs, and varied quantities of brackish and marine water fish species like sea
bass and mullet, most of which are produced as by-crops or fallow crops in the shrimp
ponds. This constitutes the major export oriented subsector, and is increasingly shaped by
international trade conditions and by national responses to these. Its relatively high value
places considerable importance for upstream inputs such as seed and feeds, and for
downstream elements such as transport and processing.

Seed Supply:

This sub-sector comprises both capture and culture elements, supplying both finfish and
shrimp seed. Both groups still depend to varying degrees on wild caught stocks, though
fish (carp) culture is increasingly dominated by hatchery supply and shrimp/prawn
culture is steadily increasing its demands for cultured stock. The supply of wild seed has
important interactions with artisanal fishing in coastal areas. Whatever, the source of
seed, considerable national (and cross border) networks have built up to transport and
distribute seed from points of origin to producers. The government has banned catching
of wild post larvae from the coastal zone to conserve its biodiversity. Accordingly, the
supply of hatchery produced seed has been increased significantly in last 4 years and the
seed transportation system also modernized as well. Still farmers are depending upon
nature for finfish (sea bass, mullet, etc) seeds.

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Post harvest and Market:

The gradual shift from local consumption within rural areas and the growth in urban
markets and their service infrastructures has increased the role of market intermediaries
and service suppliers for the coastal aquaculture. However, as many markets are still
based on wet fish sale the scope for value addition is minimal to date.

More particularly, the production of shrimp and the export in frozen tailed form has
created a significant production sub-sector, with commercial investment and notable
employment impacts. Demand for shrimp is increasing in the US and Europe. Though the
Japanese market has slowdown, new markets have emerged in Asia such as the Republic
of Korea, Singapore and Hong Kong. In 2001, Bangladesh achieved its ever highest
export earnings of USD 32 million by exporting 29,719 mt shrimp. The growth in exports
has been consistent since the early 1970s, but the problems associated with identified
health and food safety in 1997 - 2000.

General Support to the Sub-sector:

A range of associated functions - products and services, can be recognized, serving as the
primary multiplier elements for the sub-sector. However, as most forms of output are
relatively under or undeveloped. Elements include aquaculture seed, feed, equipment and
their maintenance and other supplies for post-harvest needs. Particular changes are
occurred in more commercializing sub sector. The provision of extension and research
services and of financial and management services can also be further developed and
modernized in this sub sector.

Off-shore Mariculture:

Bangladesh is exploring its marine resources by only capturing the fishes from the sea. It
has about 714 km long coast line with 166,000 km2 EEZ with 1093 aquatic marine
organisms including finfish, shellfish, shrimps, seaweeds, etc. The marine capture fish is
declining about 5% per annum. If it is continued, the total fish production will be held
back in near future. So, it is the right time to think about how to increase the marine
production, and the Mariculture initiatives should be taken now. Among the marine
fishes, only shrimps are cultured in on-shore ponds. Some other species like sea bass,
mullet and mud crab are also started to culture in the ponds in saline water traditionally in
a limited scale. However, it has huge potentiality of off-shore Mariculture. In contrast, it
could be concluded that there is no Mariculture exist in Bangladesh.

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 EXISTENCE OF NGO IN BANGLADESH

Introduction:

Developmental NGOs play a major role in Bangladesh’s human development process.


Media are regarded as important for developmental NGOs, as they can promote or create
awareness about NGO activities. NGOs need media to convey their messages, and also to
form public opinion about government policy. Similarly, news media have become
dependent on NGOs for covering development issues. Developmental NGOs of
Bangladesh are among the most active in the world, and they have been successful in
helping the government to achieve targets in human resource development (UNDP,
2005). This study investigates factors concerning NGO-media interaction that influence
the coverage of developmental issues in Bangladesh, a least developed country2 that is
also a “medium human development” country (UNDP, 2005).

Knowledge transmission and enhanced transparency are regarded as key ingredients of an


effective strategy by development policymakers. Promoting good governance and
development requires improvement of media capacity for reporting on socioeconomic
and development issues such as public health and education (Hudock, 2003; and Ojo,
2005).

NGO Activities in Bangladesh:

Bangladesh became independent in 1971, through a bloody liberation war to escape the
rule of what was then West Pakistan. Bangladesh’s struggle for economic emancipation
continues; the country remains poor. Though the country has progressed in human
development and agriculture compared to other least developed countries in the 36 years
since independence, its development process has been fettered by political and
environmental factors. Developmental NGOs have significantly contributed to the
development process in Bangladesh. Since independence, the NGO sector in Bangladesh
has emerged to contribute to the state’s daunting task of rebuilding a war-ravaged nation
(Ahmad, 2001). Leading NGOs such as the Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee
(BRAC), Proshika, and Grameen Bank started their activities in the early or mid-1970s
(Lewis, 1993).

At the start of the 1990s, development prospects for Bangladesh were seen as slim, about
the equivalent of those for sub-Saharan Africa today (UNDP, 2005:46). Even so,
Bangladesh has recorded “some of the developing world’s most rapid advances” in basic
human development indicators since the mid-1990s. According to the World Human
Development Report 2005, the successes of Bangladesh demonstrate what can be
achieved through stronger state action and civic activism. Apart from progress in infant
mortality, fertility, and nutrition, primary school enrollment rates now exceed 90%, up
from 72% in 1990, and enrollment in secondary education has been rising too (UNDP,
2005). NGOs’ success in poverty alleviation and development initiatives is often
undermined, though, by political misuse of government policy regarding NGO sector (“
EU to urge govt again to release fund allocated for Proshika,” 2004).

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In order to support social and economic empowerment of the poor, NGOs in Bangladesh
have vastly widened their activities to include group formation, micro-credit, formal and
informal education, training, health and nutrition, family planning and welfare,
agriculture and related activities, water supply and sanitation, human rights and
advocacy, and legal aid. Some NGOs have succeeded in providing services such as
education, health, and microfinance and in promoting human rights, particularly women's
rights (Rafi & Chowdhury, 2000; Shehabuddin, 1999). NGOs’ activities in the sector of
human resource development have contributed significantly to national achievement. But
in areas such as poverty, quality education, women's rights, and human rights, NGOs
need media support to inform and mobilize people. Distance and lack of interaction
between media and NGOs over these issues stand in the way of implementing these
development initiatives.

Bangladesh has been perhaps the most important hearth on the globe for non-
governmental organizations. Some estimates place the number of NGOs in Bangladesh in
excess of 20,000. There are many types of NGOs in the country, but most focus on
development or poverty alleviation. Bangladesh is often seen as the birthplace of the
microcredit NGO, namely the Grameen Bank. The Comilla District in Bangladesh has
also long been the pet project of global developmental theorists and NGOs.

International NGOs:

* Actionaid
* CARE Bangladesh
* Concern
* Manusher Jonno
* Oxfam
* SAP - South Asia Partnership
* Save the Children Australia
* Save the Children Canada
* Save the Children Germany
* Save the Children UK
* Save the Children USA
* TdH-Italy Terre des hommes Italia
* Terre des hommes Netherlands]
* USAID - U.S. Agency for International development
* USC Canada Bangladesh
* Voluntary Service Overseas
* Damien Foundation
* NBDP-North Bengal Development Program (Thakurgaon)
* Thengamara Mohila Sabuj Sangha (TMSS)

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Microfinance institutions (MFIs):

* AALO
* ARBAN (NGO) (Association for Realisation of Basic Needs)
* ASA
* BRAC
* BARSA [Bangladesh Association of Rural and Social Advancement], Satkhira.
* DORP (Development Organisation of the Rural Poor)
* Grameen Bank
* GKP (Gono Kallayan Parishad)
* PARD (Palash Palli Unnayan Sangstha)
* POPI (People's Oriented Program Implementation)
* RDRS Bangladesh (Rangpur Dinajur Rural Service)
* TMSS (Thengamara Mohila Sabuj Sangha)
* PMUK (Padakhep Manabik Unnayan Kendra)

Children:

* GKP - Gono Kallayan Parishad


* BSAF - Bangladesh Shishu Adhikar Forum
* DDF - Destitute Development Foundation
* STS - Shishu Tori Sangstha
* TALF - Theater & Arts for Less Fortunate
* Compassion International
* Ayoti Women and Children Care Organization Bogra Bangladesh

Education:

* ARBAN (Association for Realisation of Basic Needs)


* BEES - Bangladesh Educational & Environment Society
* CAMPE (Campaign for Popular Education)
* DAM - Dhaka Ahsania Mission
* GKP - Gono Kallayan Parishad
* DDF - Destitute Development Foundation
* FIVDB - Friends in Village Development Bangladesh
* GSS - Gonoshahajjo Sangstha
* SJA - Sylhet Jubo Academy
* Underprivileged Children's Educational Programs
* Fahad khan Foundation

Health:

* GKP - Gono Kallayan Parishad


* Damien Foundation
* DDF - Destitute Development Foundation
* Marie Stopes

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* Centre for Injury Prevention and Research, Bangladesh
* TALF - Theater & Arts for Less Fortunate[http://talf.webs.

Human Rights and Humanitarian Organizations:

* ASK - Ain O Salish Kendra


* BATU-SAARC
* BILS - Bangladesh Institute of Labour Studies
* BRCT - Bangladesh Rehabilitation Centre for Trauma VictimsBRCT
* GKP - Gono Kallayan Parishad
* DDF - Destitute Development Foundation
* PARD - Palash Palli Unnayan Sangstha
* PRAN - Participatory Research & Action Network
* HRCBM - Human Rights and Humanitarian Services Organization
* KARMOJIBINARI (KN)
* THE HUNGER PROJECT
* SJA - Sylhet Jubo Academy
* Steps - Steps towards Development
* BARSA [Bangladesh Association of Rural and Social Advancement], Satkhira.

Indigenous Communities:

* ECDO - Ethnic Community Development Organization, Sylhet


* DDF - Destitute Development Foundation
* PBM - Parbataya Bouddha Mission, Chittagong Hill Tracts

Environment:

* BEES - Bangladesh Educational & Environment Society


* DDF - Destitute Development Foundation
* Water and Sanitation:
* SJA - Sylhet Jubo Academy
* GKP - Gono Kallayan Parishad
* NGOF for DWSS (NGO Forum for Drinking Water Supply and Sanitation)
* Participatory Research & Action Network- PRAN

Youth:

* YPSA - Young Power in Social Action


* SJA - Sylhet Jubo Academy
* DDF - Destitute Development Foundation
* sb - Surid Bangladesh
* TRDO - Teenager Research & Development Organization

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Research Organizations:

* PromPT - Promoting Participation & Training


* DDF - Destitute Development Foundation
* HDRC - Human Development Research Centre
* PPRC - Power and Participation Research Centre
* PPS-BD- PRA Promoters' Society- Bangladesh
* Unnayan Onneshan - The Innovators
* Shamunnay
* Participatory Research & Action Network- PRAN

SME Development:

* Change Maker - Society for Social and Economic Development

Rural Development:

* GKP - Gono Kallayan Parishad


* DDF - Destitute Development Foundation
* SAP - South Asia Partnership-Bangladesh
* VARD - Voluntary Association for Rural Development
* Society for Integration of Rural Initiatives
* RDRS Bangladesh (Rangpur Dinajpur Rural Service)
* Grameen Swapna
* SJA - Sylhet Jubo Academy
* BSDS - Bangladesh Social Development Services (BSDS)
* ARD- Association for Rural development (ARD)

136
 TEA SECTOR IN BANGLADESH

Tea Industry was pioneered in the 19th century by the British planters. Later, some Indian
entrepreneurs purchased tea gardens from their European owners. Indian entrepreneurs
also came forward to develop new plantations.

Around 1823, tea started to be grown for commercial purposes in the Assam forests,
which has ideal soil and climatic conditions for the crop. Assam Tea Company started the
first commercial efforts in organised tea growing in 1839. Tea cultivation in Bengal
developed concurrently with that in the northeastern part of India during the early
nineteenth century. The Assam indigenous tea plant was established in Chandkhani Hills
of Sylhet in 1855. At about the same time, wild tea was found along Khashi and Jainta
Hills. Tea plantation started in Chittagong in 1840 with few China plants from the
Botanical gardens in Calcutta and seeds from Assam as well as those imported from
China. The first commercial tea plantation was introduced in the eastern part of Bengal in
1854 at Malnicherrea in Sylhet. It was extended to Lalchand and Mertinga in 1860.

After the Partition of Bengal in 1947, East Pakistan inherited 133 tea estates covering
30,350 ha and their annual production was 18.80 million kg of tea. Tea production rose to
25.17 million kg in 1964, but the rate of growth of production in the province was lower
than that in major tea producing countries. Annual domestic consumption rose sharply
from 13.15 million kg in 1949 to 22.59 million kg in 1962-63. During this period, export
of tea declined because of increased consumption at home, especially in West Pakistan.

The war of liberation in 1971 caused severe damage to the tea industry of Bangladesh.
Threat to life and the torture of the Pakistani army forced many tea garden workers to
leave tea gardens. The gardens also suffered heavily because of the war. Protected market
of West Pakistan was lost. The auction sales in chittagong were suspended.
Communication network and transport links were disrupted. The cumulative effect was a
fall in output of tea gardens. The new government of Bangladesh appointed a committee
in 1972 to make detailed study of the problems faced by the industry. The committee
suggested measures to raise productivity and to reduce cost of production and marketing.
Requirements identified by the committee included more intensive cultivation,
replacement of old and uneconomic tea plants, use of improved seeds and clones, growth
of subsidiary crops, modernisation of factories, and grant of financial incentives for
establishing co-operative factories for the benefit of small gardens. Attention of the
authority was drawn to the high ratio of vacancy caused by unplanned infixing
programmes, particularly in old tea gardens, waterlogging due to lack of proper drainage
system, vigour of tea bushes, need for introducing shade trees and a pruning system to
keep bushes in continuous vegetative phase.

In Bangladesh there are three kinds of ownership of tea gardens: foreign owned sterling
companies, Bangladeshi Joint Stock Companies and privately owned proprietary tea
estates. In early 1990s, a total of 12 sterling companies were in tea business. They owned
26 gardens, all located in maulvi bazar and habiganj districts. Fifty Bangladeshi

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companies owned and operated 73 gardens, of these the National Tea Company owned
12 and 57 were under proprietorship management.

The number of tea gardens increased to 158 by 2000. These gardens covered 48,300
hectares. Of these gardens, 135 are in sylhet division and 23 are in chittagong division.
The tea estates in Bangladesh annually produce about 55 million kg of tea. But the
productivity is lower than in other tea growing countries largely due to uneconomic size
of tea gardens. The country occupies the 9th position in respect of production among the
30 tea producing countries of the world. Half of the produce is consumed at home and the
rest is exported. Bangladesh earns foreign exchange worth about Tk 2,000 million every
year from tea export. Bangladesh exports tea (mostly black tea) to the following
countries: Afghanistan, Australia, Belgium, China, Cyprus, France, Germany, Greece,
India, Iran, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, KSA, Kyrghistan, Oman,
Pakistan, Poland, Russia, Sudan, Switzerland, Taiwan, UAE, UK and USA.

The tea sector contributes about 0.8% of the GDP in Bangladesh. About 0.15 million
people are directly employed in the tea industry, which constitutes about 3.3 percent of
the country's total employment. Many more people are indirectly employed in other
sectors related to tea.

Basic Information of Bangladesh tea Industry:

Land of Tea Estates:

a. No. of Tea Estates 163


b. No. of Tea Factories 114
c. Total Garden Area 115,629.76 ha.
d. Total Nurseries 1015.66 ha.
I. Seed Bari -320.47 ha.
II. Seed Nurseries -286.71 ha.
III. Clone Nurseries -408.48 ha.

Tea Area excluding Nurseries: - 52,407.22 ha.

1) Tea Bush 0-5 years 5,886.24 ha.


2) Tea Bush 6-10 years 5,933.24 ha.
3) Tea Bush 11-40 years 18,170.34 ha.
4) Tea Bush 41-60 years 12,542.78 ha.
5) Tea Bush above 60 years 9,874.62 ha.

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Global Export of Tea:

Total global export of tea in 2006 was 1572 million kgs of which Bangladesh exported
only 4.97 million kgs. World export volumes hardly increased during the year under
review. India, Sri Lanka, Vietnam and Argentina ended the year with higher exports
whilst exports from Indonesia, Kenya and Bangladesh dropped. Export from Bangladesh
declined about 88% from 9.01 M.kg in 2005 to 4.79 M.kg. in 2006 mainly due to
increase of internal demand that pushes the local auction prices up.

World Export of Tea in 2006 (Million Kg)

Country Export
1. Sri Lanka 315
2. Kenya 314
3. China 287
4. India 201
5. Vietnam 106
6. Indonesia 95
7. Argentina 71
8. Malawi 42
9. Uganda 33
10.Tanzania 24
11.Rwanda 13
12.Zimbabwe 11
13.Georgia 8
14.Turkey 6
15.Bangladesh 5
16.Taiwan 2
17.Other 39
Countries

Total World Export of Tea- 1,572 million KGs.

139
 SHIPBUILDING SECTOR IN BANGLADESDH

IN an exceptionally quick response to the demand of the shipbuilders, the government


has announced a policy package to boost the rapidly growing shipbuilding industry
treating this as a thrust sector. Under the policy the shipbuilders will enjoy 'bonded
warehouse' facilities like the export-oriented readymade garment industries.

Shipbuilding in Bangladesh emerged as a potential sector in recent years when two local
builders got export orders worth over US$150 million. Foreign orders jumped to 350
million dollars within a year. The shipbuilders import 80 percent of the raw materials and
hundred percent of the machinery. The problem with this import is that customs clearance
of those goods takes three to four months. In a bid to avoid the hassles, the shipbuilders
had been demanding different facilities. Under the latest government response, the
shipbuilding sector will enjoy facilities including duty free import of raw materials and
tax holiday for ten years.

The National Board of Revenue has imposed some conditions with a view to preventing
sale of the imported goods to the local market. While such conditions are necessary,
precautions must be taken so that those do not hamper the growth of the sector. It is
gathered that a sort of vacuum in shipbuilding prevails internationally. The shipbuilding
industry should take advantage of this to grow as a strong contender. The government
should also expedite the installation of the proposed steel industry with a production
capacity of two million tons of hot rolled steel sheets to bring an end to the dependence
on imported sheets. The builders must make quality ships at competitive costs to hold and
expand the market.

The three largest shipbuilding companies in Bangladesh have secured offer s for ship
building of about 200 million Euros within the last three months. This shows a huge
potential in this sector. Ananda Shipyard, Western Marine Shipyard Ltd. and Highspeed
Shipbuilding & Engineering Co Ltd. have recently singed MoUs for orders from
Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands to build ships. It appears that European
shipbuilding companies are all booked with orders till 2010 and that Asian shipbuilders
in Korea, Japan, China, Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam have adequate export orders.
This vacuum has created a great opportunity for the country’s booming shipbuilding
industry to get involved into the global export market. The Government of Bangladesh is
now formulating policies to allow the shipbuilders to import capital machinery for setting
up new heavy shipyards and bonded warehouse facilities for import of all raw materials
through a so-called green channel. Thes e facilities will provide enough incentives to the
sector to contribute substantially to the national economy.

140
 REMITTANCE

During the 18th and 19th centuries, development impact of migration was mostly
recorded in the context of receiving states whereas since 2nd world war migration
experience underscores positive economic and social benefits for both receiving and
sending countries. Remittances are substantive yardstick of macro level benefits in
sending countries. Various figures indicate that flow of migrant remittances from sending
to receiving countries are continuously growing. Global figures state that official
remittances have increased from less than US$ 2 billion in 1970 to US$ 80 billion in
2000 (ILO, 2002). This does not include informal transfers. Micro-studies in countries
like Pakistan and Bangladesh have shown that only around half of the remittances are
transferred through official channels and the rest find their way through different
unofficial methods. Consequently the actual amount of remittance is likely to be at least
double the officially recorded figures1.

Sixty percent of the global remittance flow is towards developing countries (Sorensen
2004). This figure is more than global official development assistance (ODA) as well as
capital market flows (Gammeltoft, 2002) to those countries. When compared with foreign
direct investment (FDI) in those countries, amount of remittances are over half of total
flow. Moreover, remittances as source of financial flows are found to be more stable than
private capital flows and to be less volatile to changing economic cycle (Ratha, 2003).
International organizations like ILO, IOM, IMF, World Bank and ADB are increasingly
emphasising migrants’ remittance as tool to promote development. Bangladesh is a huge
labour surplus country. Hence it belongs to the supply side of the global labour market.
On an average, 2,50,000 people annually (1995-2003) migrate to take up overseas
employment. Flow of migrant workers is associated with growing flow of remittance to
Bangladesh. In 2002, it accounted for 2% of the global remittance transfer and 12% of
the official remittance to South Asia (Table: 1). Since the late 1990s, successive
governments of Bangladesh, realising the importance of remittance to the economy, have
undertaken different macro-economic reforms to encourage official flow of remittance.
The 7th parliamentary government has established a new ministry entitled Expatriates’
Welfare and Overseas Employment (EWOE) to ensure efficient management of
migration sector in Bangladesh.

Bangladeshi Migrants:

Currently two types of voluntary international migration occur from Bangladesh. One
takes place mostly to the industrialized west and the other to Middle Eastern and South
East Asian countries. Voluntary migration to the industrialized west includes permanent
residents, work permit holders and professionals. They are usually perceived as long term
or permanent migrants. Migration to Middle East and South East Asia are usually for
short term. The migrants return home after finishing their contract. Although longterm
migration is much older than short term yet information on their types, extent and
composition is not available with the government. Information on the short term labour
migrants who officially go overseas for employment is available with the Bureau of
Manpower Employment and Training (BMET)

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Extent

BMET3 data show that from 1976 to 2003, the total number of Bangladeshis working
abroad as short-term migrants stands at more than three million (Table 2). It indicates a
yearly average flow (1991–2002) of around 214,098. There is a slight decline in
migration in 1991, perhaps because of Gulf War in that year. Again, dramatic increase is
recorded in the following two years. This might have been the reward for Bangladesh’s
participation in the anti- Iraq alliance through deployment of troops in protecting the holy
land of Mekkah and Medina in Saudi Arabia during 1991 Gulf War. The workers were
involved in post-war reconstruction. It also shows that the highest number of people
migrating from Bangladesh was in the year 1999 (268,182). A large number of
Bangladeshi is also believed to have gone to the Middle East through irregular process.

Main Flow

Currently, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait, Qatar, Oman, Iraq, Libya, Bahrain, Iran, alaysia,
South Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong and Brunei are some of the major countries of
destination. Saudi Arabia alone accounts for nearly one half of the total number of
workers who migrated from Bangladesh. Labour market of Bangladeshi workers is not
static. During the 1970s Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Iran and Libya were some of the major
destination countries. While the position of Saudi Arabia remains at the top, Malaysia
and UAE became important receivers. In mid-1990s, Malaysia became the second largest
employer of Bangladeshi workers. However, since the financial crisis of 1997,
Bangladeshis migrating to Malaysia dropped drastically (see Table 2). Now UAE has
taken over its place.

Type of Employment

BMET has classified short-term migrants to Middle East and South East Asia into four
categories: professional, skilled, semi-skilled, and unskilled. Doctors, engineers, teachers
and nurses are considered as professional workers. Manufacturing or garment workers,
drivers, computer operators and electricians are considered as skilled, while tailors and
masons as semiskilled. Housemaids, agri-labourer, hotel boy and menial labourers, ie,
cleaners, cart loader, carton pickers are considered as unskilled workers. Table 3 shows
the percentage share of different skill category of migrants from 1976 to 2003. Only a
small proportion of migrants are professionals (4.40%). 31% of them are skilled, 16%
semi-skilled and 47% are unskilled workers.

Remittance Dynamics

Flow of Remittance:

The Bangladesh Bank5 documents remittance flows to Bangladesh from all over the
world. This means it covers remittance of both long term and short term migrants. Bank
data shows that the remittances sent by the migrants have grown over time. It has
increased from a paltry figure of US$ 23.71m in 1976 to more than US$ 3b in 2002-03

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fiscal year(Table 5). Nonetheless, the yearly growth rate of remittance is much less than
the growth rate of the total number of migrant workers.6 Throughout the last twenty-five
years, the remittance flows broadly indicate an average yearly increase of around 10
percent. The most important reason behind such gap in migrant andremittance flows is
that in recent times Bangladesh has exported more unskilled and semi-skilled migrants
whose wages are rather low compared to those of previous skilled and professional ones.
Wage rates have also fallen drastically over the past decade (Siddiqui and Abrar, 2003).

Annual quantities of remittances per sending country. One half of the total remittance
came from one country, i.e., Saudi Arabia. Over the years, the US has become the second
largest remittance sending country, Kuwait and the UAE being the third and fourth.
Migrants use different methods in sending remittance involving both official and
unofficial channels. A section of remittance is also transferred in kind. The goods that
migrants bring along while visiting or returning to Bangladesh, or send with
acquaintances can be termed as remittance in kind. Siddiqui and Abrar in a study (2003),
calculated remittances received in kind by 100 families in two regions of Bangladesh7.
Table 6 shows the number of goods received by the migrant families as remittance in
kind and their estimated value. When added with the total sum sent in Taka, this value
increased the total remittance of these families by another 9.21%.

Contribution of Remittance to the National Economy

Labour migration plays a vital role in the economy of Bangladesh. Bangladesh has a very
narrow export base. Readymade garments, frozen fish, jute, leather and tea are the five
groups of items that account for fourfifths of its export earnings. Currently, garments
manufacturing is treated as the highest foreign exchange earning sector of the country
(US $ 4.583 billion in 2003). However, if the cost of import of raw material is adjusted,
then the net earning from migrant workers’ remittances is higher than that of the
garments sector. In 2003, net export earning from RMG should be between US$2.29-2.52
billion, whereas the earning from remittance is net US$3.063 billion. In fact, since the
1980s, contrary to the popular belief, remittances sent by the migrants played a much
greater role in sustaining the economy of Bangladesh than the garments sector.8 For the
last two decades, remittances have been at levels of around 35% of export earnings,
making it the single largest source of foreign currency earner for the country. This has
been used in financing the import of capital goods and raw materials for industrial
development. In the year 1998-99, 22 percent of the official import bill was financed by
remittances (Afsar, 2000; Murshed, 2000 and Khan, 2003). The steady flow of
remittances has resolved the foreign exchange constraints, improved the balance of
ayments, and helped increase the supply of national savings (Quibria 1986). Remittances
also constituted a very important source of the country’s development budget. In certain
years in the 1990s remittances’ contribution rose to more than 50 percent of the country’s
development budget. Government of Bangladesh treats Foreign aid (concessional loan
and grants) as an important resource base of the country. However, remittances that
Bangladesh received last year was twice that of foreign aid. Remittances have played a
major role in reducing the extent of the country’s dependence on foreign aid.

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The contribution of remittance to GDP has also grown from a meagre 1 percent in 1977-
1978 to 5.2 percent in 1982-83. During the 1990s the ratio hovered around 4 percent.
However if one takes into account the unofficial flow of remittances, its contribution to
GDP would certainly be much higher. Murshed (2000) finds that an increase in
remittance by Taka 1 would result in an increase in national income by Tk 3.33.
Following the expiry of multi-fiber agreement (MFA), Bangladesh will face steep
competition in export of RMG. The country will cease to enjoy any special quota. It is
apprehended that Bangladesh’s RMG export will decline sharply. This will result in loss
of job of many workers and shortfall in foreign exchange earning. Potential of retaining
employment and export earning through export of frozen fish, jute, leather and tea seems
rather bleak. It is in this context labour migration has become key sector for earning
foreign exchange and creating opportunities for employment. Therefore, the importance
of migrant remittance to the economy of Bangladesh can hardly be over emphasized.

144
 PHARMACEUTICALS MANUFACTURING FIRMS IN
BANGLADESH

Bangladeshi pharmaceutical firms focus primarily on branded generic final formulations


using imported APIs. About 80% of the drugs sold in Bangladesh are generics and 20%
are patented drugs. The country manufactures about 450 generic drugs for 5,300
registered brands which have 8,300 different forms of dosages and strengths. These
include a wide range of products from anti-ulcerants, flouroquinolones, anti-rheumatic
non-steroid drugs, non-narcotic analgesics, antihistamines, and oral anti-diabetic drugs.
Some larger firms are also starting to produce anti-cancer and anti-retroviral drugs
(Sampath 2007).

Domestically, Bangladeshi firms generate 82% of the market in pharmaceuticals; locally


based MNCs account for 13%, and the final 5% is imported. Although 235
pharmaceutical companies are registered in Bangladesh, only about 85 are actively
producing drugs. The top 30 to 40 companies dominate almost the entire market; the top
10 hold 70% of domestic market share; and the top two, Beximco and Square, capture
over 25% of the market (Chowdhury 2006). The industry structure is relatively
concentrated. In comparison, the top ten Japanese firms generated approximately 45% of
The domestic industry revenue in 2006, while the top ten UK firms generated
approximately 53%, and the top ten German firms generated approximately 60% (IMS
Health 2006).

Because Bangladesh API capacity is insignificant, API firms import approximately 80%
of their APIs. Fifteen to seventeen Bangladeshi firms are involved in the manufacture of
about twenty APIs, but they usually run the final chemical synthesis stage with API
intermediaries, instead of the complete chemical synthesis. The other 1,000 required APIs
are imported.6 approximately 75-80% of the imported APIs is generic.7

In 2005, the size of the Bangladeshi pharmaceutical market was $500 million in terms of
production, and it is expected to grow at 10% per annum.8 In Figure 1, the industry’s
annual historical growth rate in terms of production, is compared with Square
Pharmaceutical’s, the largest domestic firm.

Drug Quality:

For generic pharmaceutical products, quality is defined as the generic drug having the
same active ingredients as the original formulation and being bioequivalent to the brand
name counterpart with respect to pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic properties
(equivalent absorption rates, elimination rates, and other in vivo effects). By extension,
therefore, generics are assumed to be identical to the original product in dose, strength,
route of administration, safety, efficacy and intended use.

While some Bangladeshi pharmaceutical products on the market are of world-class


standards, others are less so. Medical professionals and pharmacists interviewed voiced
strong opinions on the quality levels of different brands.

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Some Bangladeshi firms have invested in quality raw materials, manufacturing processes
and environment, and technical know-how. However, a “perverse incentive” exists
against upgrading due to the weak regulatory structure. Firms that have invested
minimally in quality continue to sell drugs alongside those that have invested
substantially. Because of weak regulations, the consumer cannot determine quality
differences and select for purchase the superior product. As a result, firms that have
invested in quality manufacturing and quality processes are in a sense penalized.

Export Market:

Pharmaceutical firms in Bangladesh export approximately $27.54 million in products to


68 countries.16 Bangladeshi firms can export to the following markets:

• Regulated: Square Pharmaceuticals, the only Bangladeshi pharmaceutical firm


accredited in a regulated market, received the UK’s regulatory approval in May 2007.
The largest barriers to regulated markets are manufacturing facilities which come at a
cost of at least $50 million and know-how.
• Moderately Regulated: Some markets, such as Tanzania and Malaysia, are moderately
regulated. While countries do not always require stringent certification, a certification
from a regulated market signifies quality and provides a firm with a competitive
advantage.
• Unregulated: Most Bangladeshi pharmaceuticals are exported to less than fully
regulated markets such as Bhutan, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Vietnam and Myanmar.

The majority of Bangladesh’s pharmaceutical exports are from Novartis/Sandoz, as


shown in Table 2. Novartis/Sandoz, an MNC operating in Bangladesh, has approximately
25 manufacturing sites globally (Bangladesh Association of Pharmaceutical Industries
2005). Bangladesh is one of its smaller sites. The Bangladeshi manufacturing site is an
EU certified plant which produces about 500 million tablets a year and generates about
$35-$40 million in sales. It has been growing rapidly—15-18% per year—and is
responsible for a significant portion of Bangladesh’s pharmaceutical export growth. It
imports APIs, acquires packaging domestically, and manufactures final formulations in
Bangladesh for export of $12 million or for sale to the domestic market ranging from
$23-$28 million.17

Exporting a pharmaceutical product is challenging. Each country has its own product
regulations, registration requirements, language requirements, cultural preferences,
national packaging requirements, and industry protection mechanisms. Sales on the
global market are quite competitive with firms from around the world vying for business.
Furthermore, initiating exports requires a significant investment in money, time and
paperwork to register the product in the target country. As generic products are branded
in less regulated markets, pharmaceutical firms also need to make significant investments
in sales and marketing to create product demand. All these investments are made without
a guarantee of future sales.

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 INVESMENT OPPORTUNITIES

1. AGRO-BASED INDUSTRY

Sector Highlights:

* Bangladesh has a tropical climate, a lot of fresh water, indeed a land interspersed with
numerous rivers, fertile soil and possibility to cultivate crops round the year. So, it is
unique to supply raw materials for the agro-based industry.
* Fruits and vegetable production has increased significantly in recent years.
* Government and NGOs have been conducting regular training programs in developing
skilled manpower for agro-based industry.
* Substantial demand supply gap in the agro-based industry both in the domestic and
international market.

Industry Incentives:

* Specially arranged Equity Entrepreneurship Fund for development of agro-based


industry.
* Special loan facilities available to set up an agro-based industry.
* Agro-based industry enjoys tax holiday.
* Any investment in this sector will enjoy similar tax amnesty as available in other
sectors.
* Imposition of supplementary duty on mango, orange, grape, apples, dates and others to
utilize the high quality and cheaper local resources.
* Cash incentive to the exporters ranges from 15% to 20% in various sub-sectors.

Sector Background:

Being an agrarian economy, agriculture has dominated in the economy for years. It has
fulfilled the preconditions of access to input and raw materials in setting up successful
agro-based industries. Alluvial soil, a year-round frost-free environment, adequate water
supply and abundance of cheap labor are available in Bangladesh. Increased cultivation
of vegetables, spices and tropical fruits now grown in Bangladesh could supply raw
materials to local agro-processing industries for both domestic and export markets. In
2005-06, Export of agricultural products accounted for about 1.00% of total export
amounting US$ 76.24 million.

Industry Outlook:

To avail the competitive and comparative advantages, Bangladesh invites progressive


agricultural practices, improved marketing technique and modern processing facilities.
The government emphasizes development of the agricultural sector through appropriate
measures to increase crop sector productivity and production of non-crop agriculture by
providing increased credit, and facilitating greater access to inputs and modern

147
technology. Investment interests in setting up agro-based industries in Bangladesh are
highly encouraged.

To promote agro-based industries and attract investment in this sector, Board of


Investment organized ‘Agri-Invest 2003 Bangladesh’ in December 2003. This first ever
exposition created huge interest among the foreign and local investors.

2. FROZEN FOODS

Sector Highlights:

1. Government is promoting semi-intensive shrimp farming.


2. Fish and prawn exports grew at an average 20% in the past decade.
3. Shrimp processing and export industry is largely dominated by the smaller
unorganized sector.

Industry Outlook

The frozen foods export is the second largest export sector of the country. After some
initial difficulties in terms of quality achievement, exporters have earned credibility and
trustworthiness in the global market. Assurance of reliable and continued product quality
is a major challenge in this sector. Technology orientation, marketing perceptions, and
quality improvement aspects invite foreign investment in this sector. The current
challenges of international trading are largely dictated by price, quality, time and service.

* Hatcheries
* Sustainable aqua-culture technology
* Feed meals plants
* Processing unit for value-added products.

Investment in frozen food sector with new technology and equipment has a vast potential
for growth.

Industry Outlook

Frozen food sub-sector has credible opportunities in Middle East, EU and North
American countries and Far Eastern countries. In 2004-05, total fish production was
22.16 lack metric tons of which 8.82 metric .tons were shrimp. At present, there are 868
fish hatcheries and farm of which 2.18 lack hectors of shrimp farm. This export-oriented
industry includes the following sub-sectors, which need proper attention for
augmentation of production, attain international standard quality and export earnings.

148
3. NATURAL GAS-BASED INDUSTRIES

Sector Highlights

* Bangladesh has a net recoverable gas reserve of approximately 28.4 TCF of which
primary recoverable is 20.51 TCF.
* Amount of gas production till January, 05 was 6.033 TCF.
* Joint venture opportunities between BPDB and private sector are open.
* There is a huge demand for fertilizer in Bangladesh as the agriculture is the principal
sector of the economy.
* Usage of indigenous resources and conservation of environment are important policy
concerns of the Government.
* Introduction of CNG fuelling in the metropolises has geared the need for establishment
of sufficient CNG Distribution Stations.

Industry Incentives:

Energy and Power sector has significant investment incentives like:

* Tax holiday for 15 years.


* Tax exemption from interest payable on foreign loans.
* Tax exemption from royalties, technical know-how and technical assistance fees
payable.
* Tax exemption from profit arising from transfer of shares.

Industry Situation:

Among the three main operators in power sector, until recently, BPDB was the sole
public sector power generator in Bangladesh. It is also responsible for transmission and
distribution of electricity outside Dhaka and in some rural areas. DESA is responsible for
transmission and distribution of electricity in and around Dhaka – the largest load center
in Bangladesh. REB distributes electricity in rural areas through operating Palli Bidyut
Samities (PBSs). All of them are controlled by the Ministry of Energy and Mineral
Resources (MEMR). PDB at presents owns some 3,091 MW of generation capacity.

With the increasing growth in industry, commerce and household usage, the demand for
electricity in Bangladesh is enormous. It is assumed that the power demand will increase
at around 6% per annum in the upcoming years.

CNG is a highly efficient, eco-friendly and cost-effective fuelling option for motorized
vehicles. It could also make significant cross-savings in the health sector and reduce
public health hazard. The increasing demand for maintaining air quality in metropolises
like Dhaka has become the nation’s top-most priority. As such, two-stroke petrol fuelled
taxies are being replaced with CNG-fuelled taxies. Other vehicles are also being
converted to CNG orientation. At present we have 117 CNG filling station and 72
conversion workshops. There are 46501 CNG driven cars in Bangladesh and no. is

149
increasing. Also steps have taken to set up more CNG filling station with the financial
assistance of World Bank.

4. STEEL

Sector Highlights

* Iron has been a vital material in technology for well over three thousand years.
* Usage of steel products in Bangladesh increased remarkably in 80s when this industry
flourished due to relaxation/liberalization of country’s Industrial Policy.
* World crude steel production for the 63 countries reporting to the International Iron and
Steel Institute stood at an estimated 81.7 million metric tons in October 2003.
* Steel industry in Bangladesh has huge potential of growth in the coming years.

Industry Background and Status

Steel Production in BangladeshUsage of steel products in Bangladesh increased


remarkably in 80s when this industry flourished due to relaxation/liberalization of
country’s Industrial Policy. Until 1987, people had to depend on imported CI sheet and
on the only state-owned Chittagong Steel Mills Limited, which produced small quantity
of CI sheet/GP sheet. Statistics showed the use of CI/GP sheet rose to 4.85 lakh metric
tons in 1999 from 1.00 lakh metric tons of 1987. In this backdrop to meet up this huge
demand, production of GP/CI sheets in private sector began in 1987. This industry
expanded rapidly in recent times.

In Bangladesh, there are about 300 manufacturing units to produce steel and steel
products. In terms of the products diversity, these manufacturing plants could be
categorized into at least six broad categories like:

* Billets used as feedstock to merchant mills, section mills, wire rod and seamless tube
mills etc ;
* Finished long products e.g. wire rods, rebars, plain rounds, squares, flats, angles,
channels, beams, rails etc;
* Plates used in production of boilers, merchant ships, off-shore platforms, line pipes,
railway coaches, wagons and locomotives, structures etc;
* HR Coils /sheets mainly used for manufacture of pipes and tubes and as feedstock to
cold rolling units;
* CR Coils/sheets used for production of automobiles, consumer durables, galvanized
sheets, metal products etc;
* Galvanized sheets used in consumer durable industries and domestic applications
including GP / CI sheets.

Recent implementation status Survey by BOI, revealed that annual installed capacity of
48 GP/CI sheet units registered with BOI are 6.74 lakhs MT and their average production
was 4.70 lakh MT.

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According to statistics, on an average, about 5.14 lakhs MT BP Sheet/CR Coil were
imported annually from 1996 to 1999. In response to the huge demand for BP sheet/ CR
coil, entrepreneurs became keen to set up CR coil industry to produce it locally. During
2001-02, three CR Coil manufacturing units were established in the country. The total
annual production capacity of these three industries is 2.66 lakh MT. To date, nine CR
coil/sheet manufacturing units have been established, seven are in operation and rest two
will go to very soon. The total annual installed capacity of these nine industries is 9.51
lakhs MT and the estimated investment is Tk. 8.83 billion. Table 6.5 summarizes the steel
plants registered with BOI during FY 2002-03.

Bangladesh has around 250 Steel Re-rolling Mills consisting of five large automatic
units. The country’s only state-owned major steel producer Chittagong Steel Mills was
closed permanently by the Government in July 1999. The open-hearth furnaces had crude
steel making capacity of 150,000 metric tons per year. The mill produced angles, blooms,
and plates and also operated three hot-dip galvanizing lines fed by imported coil.
Bangladesh consumed 2 million metric tons per year of finished steel, and the
deficiencies were met by imports (Metal Bulletin, 2002).

Demand and Supply Scenario:

The demand for steel is highly correlated to the growth of investment in the industrial
sector. Above Table 6.6 presents the projected demand scenario of steel products at
present and the FY 2007-08. There remains a substantial demand-supply gap in the steel
products. With the increasing investment in infrastructure, construction, machinery,
railway machinery like locomotives, wagons, coaches; refinery machinery, pipelines;
household appliances like air conditioners, refrigerators, consumer durables; ship-
breaking and other steel intensive segments, the demand for steel is growing.

Steel Imports

Given the local production constraint, Bangladesh imports substantial amount of steel and
steel products from a number of countries. Table 6.4 presents last 5-year data on import
of iron, steel and steel products. Major sources of steel products include Australia,
Belgium, Canada, China, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Italy,
Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, North Korea, Poland, Russia, Saudi Arabia,
Singapore, South Korea, Turkey, UK and the USA.

Export Potential

There remains a substantial market for steel products in the neighboring South Asian
countries like Myanmar, India, Sri Lanka, Nepal etc. Export of CI Sheets have already
started to Middle East, Sri Lanka, Singapore, China, and some African countries like
Sierra Leone, Senegal, Uganda, Angola, Mozambique, Ghana etc. There also remains
export potentials for billets, slabs, reinforcement bars and plates. Table 6.6 presents the
recent export data of steel and steel products.

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5. CEREMICS

Sector Highlights

* Global market of ceramic tableware is about US$ 10 billion.


* Bangladesh Ceramic tableware has a good reputation is the international market like
North America and EU countries.
* Bangladesh has achieved technical expertise on ceramic tableware manufacturing.
* Historically, tableware industry is labor-intensive and Bangladesh has a skilled
manpower in ceramic industry.
* Sanitary ware and insulator has also a domestic and international market demand.
* The clean gas reserve required for firing is a great competitive advantage for
Bangladesh.

Industry Status

A few ceramic tableware manufacturers dominate the industry producing high quality
products for the international brands. A pool of skilled manpower has been developed.
The latest technological advancements in ceramic are also acquainted. Bangladesh
produces high quality Bone China transferring the technology from Japan. The domestic
market is also attractive. Some low-quality tableware is imported mainly from China to
cater the demand of lower segment of the domestic market.

Industry Outlook

Global ceramic tableware industry is currently going through a phase of acquisition and
consolidation as smaller industries in the developed countries are becoming
uncompetitive and bankrupt. As a result, the big names like Noritake, Wedgewood,
Lenox, Villeroy & Boch and Royal Doulton are all individually becoming billion-dollar
operations.

Historically, tableware industry is labor-intensive and even after spending billions of


dollars on automation, developed countries could not reduce the number of workforce
according to their expectations. As a result, the cost of production will always remain
extremely high in developed countries and the premium brands are only surviving
because they are charging huge price to the consumers for their brand equity.

Bangladesh, being a gas-rich and low-labor-cost economy, offers to be strategic partners


in production and supply of ceramic products. Investment interests in this sector are
strongly encouraged. The growing sanitaryware and insulator items has a large domestic
market. Besides, international market, both in terms of demand and access, is highly
potential.

152
 JUTE

The importance of one cash crop overshadows all else as the source of Bangladesh's
export earnings. Bangladesh is the world's largest producer of jute, a fibrous substance
used in making burlap, sacks, mats, rope and twine, and carpet backing. Jute is sold on
the international market either raw or in the form of manufactured goods. This so-called
"golden fiber" is cultivated on the same land as rice; thus each season farmers must
decide which crop to plant.

During the colonial period, when East Bengal was used by the British to produce primary
goods for processing elsewhere, raw jute was the main product. Calcutta became the
manufacturing center where jute was transformed into twine and rope, sacking material,
and carpet backing. The partition of British India in 1947 put an international boundary
between the source of the basic commodity and the manufacturing center and imposed a
great burden on Pakistan to compensate for the disruption of the industry that was its
greatest source of foreign earnings. Between 1947 and 1971 jute mills were constructed
in East Pakistan, but industrialization proceeded slowly.

In the 1960s, petroleum-based synthetics entered the market, competing with jute for
practically all of its uses. The upheavals culminating in the emergence of independent
Bangladesh drove many traditional buyers of jute to shift to synthetics. World trade in
jute and jute goods declined absolutely from 1.8 million tons in 1970 to 1.5 million tons
in 1982. Despite some major year-to-year swings, prices fell precipitously through the
mid-1980s. Prices were too low to cover the costs of production, but the government
nonetheless deemed it essential to subsidize growers and industry and ensure the
continued existence of as large a foreign market as possible. Ironically, Bangladesh's
indispendable foreigh exchange earner was thus itself a drain on the economy.

There have been enormous year-to-year fluctuations both of producer prices and of
production. An extreme example occurred between FY 1984 and FY 1986. Carry-over
stocks had been run down since the previous production surge in FY 1980, and serious
floods in 1984 resulted in unanticipated production losses. The price doubled to US$600
per ton at the export level, which triggered the traditional response of farmers; they
planted much more of their land in jute, and between one year and the next production
rose more than 50 percent, from 5.1 million bales in FY 1985 to 8.6 million bales the
following year. History proved true to itself yet again when export prices then fell by 50
percent at the export level and by more than 30 percent at the farm-gate level. The drop
would have been even greater had the government not intervened. It bought 30 percent of
the crop through the Bangladesh Jute Corporation and persuaded private mills to buy
more raw jute than justified by their own projections of demand.

Jute is a highly labor-intensive crop, much more so than rice, but the yield per hectare is
also higher than is generally achieved for rice. When the farm-gate price for jute is 50
percent higher than the price for rice, farmers respond by planting more land in jute at the
expense of rice. With the expansion of irrigation facilities in the 1980s, the economic
incentives to stick with rice have increased, but there may be scope for increasing jute

153
production by substituting it for the low-yield broadcast aus rice grown on unirrigated
land during the same season as jute.

The fact that jute production is so labor intensive has played to Bangladesh's strength,
given the country's large rural underemployment. Because wage rates in Bangladesh have
been lower than in other jute-producing countries and because Bangladesh has the ideal
growing conditions for jute, the country has benefited from encouraging its production
even when world price and demand projections have offered bleak prospects. High as
Bangladesh's share of world trade has been--in 1985 it amounted to 77 percent of all raw
jute trade and 45 percent of jute goods--there are realistic possibilities for expanding the
share still further. The World Bank has estimated that Bangladesh's share could rise to 84
percent for raw jute and 55 percent for manufactures. Jute production appeared in the late
1980s to be an essential part of the long-term development plan because, for all the
troubles and struggles associated with its planting and marketing, no alternative activity
offered any promise of being more profitable.

Many economists believe the key to preservation of the viability of jute as an


international commodity lies in maintaining price and supply stability. That has proved a
difficult task. Of thirty major primary commodities traded internationally, only about six
have as much price and supply instability as jute. Demand is highly sensitive to price
increases, but not nearly as sensitive to decreases; once a portion of the market is lost to
synthetics, it is very difficult to win it back through price competition. For example, in
FY 1986 export sales remained low despite a 35-percent decline in export prices; the fall
in world oil prices had also resulted in declines in the prices of polypropylene substitutes
for jute as well, and most buyers that had switched to synthetics chose not to return to
jute. In the late 1980s, there was nothing in the offing to arrest the trend of several
decades of decreasing global demand for jute and declines in the value of jute relative to
the goods Bangladesh must import to meet the basic needs of a desperately poor
economy.

The government has an ongoing responsibility to monitor the jute situation, to intervene
when necessary, and to preserve the economic viability of the commodity responsible for
one-third of the nation's foreign trade earnings. It sets floor prices and becomes the buyer
of last resort. In 1986 buffer-stock operations were extended through the Bangladesh Jute
Corporation and resulted in the government's buying 30 percent of the entire crop. These
stocks then become available for use by the government-owned Bangladesh Jute Mills
Corporation or for sale to private mills or overseas customers. But in this case, the
limitations of this government tool were demonstrated the next year, when the jute crop
was of normal volume but the price of raw jute fell a further 35 percent, to the lowest
levels in a decade. The government could not arrest the decline because its financial
resources and storage capacity were already stretched to the breaking point.

Some hope for a better future has been placed in cooperation among jute-producing
countries through the International Jute Organization, based in Dhaka. Member countries
in 1988 were the producing countries of Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, India, Nepal, and
Thailand and more than twenty consuming countries, including the United States. The

154
goals of the fledgling International Jute Organization were appropriately modest to begin
with, centering on better dissemination of basic information, coordination of agricultural
and industrial research and of economic studies, and steps toward coordination of
marketing. It remained to be seen in mid-1988 whether this poorly financed new
organization, representing the first feeble effort at a coordinated approach to the problems
of jute, would be effective in arresting its long decline as an important international
commodity.

d. Bangladesh Jute Mills Corporation (BJMC): BJMC produced 113 thousand metric tons
of jute goods during FY 2006-07 exported 102 thousand metric tons worth Tk. 4385
million. It also sold locally 18 thousand metric ton of Jute products worth Tk. 560
million. The contribution to the National Exchequer towards payment of duties and fees
by the BJMC mills in FY 2006-07 is Tk. 24.2 million.

155
 TOURISM IN BANGLADESH

Tourism in Bangladesh is a slowly developing foreign currency earner. The country has
much to attract international and domestic tourists.

In the northern part, comprising of the Rajshahi division, there are archaeological sites,
including the temple city Puthia in Rajshahi; the largest and most ancient archaeological
site, Mahasthangarh in Bogra; the single largest Buddhist monastery, Paharpur in
Naogaon; the most ornamental terracota Hindu temple in Bangladesh Kantaji Temple,
and many rajbaris or palaces of old zamindars.

In the south-western part, mainly the Khulna Division, there is the Sundarbans, the
largest mangrove forest of the world with Royal Bengal Tiger and spotted deer. The
historically and architecturally important sixty domed mosque in Bagerhat is a notable
site.

In the south-eastern part, which is the Chittagong division, there are mainly natural and
hilly scenarios along with sandy sea beaches. The most notable beach is the longest
unbroken sandy sea beach in the world in Cox's Bazaar.

In the north-eastern part, Sylhet division, there is a green carpet of tea plants on small
hillocks. Natural reserved forests are great attractions. Migratory birds in winter,
particularly in the haor areas, are also very attractive in this area.

CHITTAGONG

The second largest city Chittagong was termed as " a sleeping beauty emerging from the
mist and water" in the 7th century and "Ports Grande" in the 16th century. This large and
thriving port city has developed amidst lively and lovely natural surroundings studded
with green-clad, coconut palms, mosques, minarets and shrines of Muslim saints as well
as Buddhist and Hindu temples against the background of the silver blue waters of the
Bay of Bengal. Chittagong is connected with Dhaka by rail, road and air and with India,
Thailand and Middle East countries by air. Good accommodation is available in hotels
and motels.

COX's BAZAR

A small town founded in 1798 A.D. by Captain Cox of East India Company. Cox's Bazar
has one of the longest sea beaches in the world. Well protected by greenclad jungle
slopes on one side and the sea shore on the other, it is a small exquisite town with a
mixed population speaking Bangla and some Burmese. Good accommodation and eating
facilities are available at the tourist motels, cottages and hotels. Cox's Bazar is connected
with Chittagong and Dhaka by road and air.

156
RANGAMATI

Rangamati, the headquarters of Chittagong Hill Tracts region, is on the eastern bank of
the famous Kaptai lake. It is inhabited by colourful and hospitable tribal folks. Rangamati
is connected with Chittagong by road and with Kaptai by water ways. Accommodation is
available at a reasonable cost with the tourist motels and cottages situated at scenic spots
on the bank of the lake. Mechanised and country boats are available for cruise in the lake.

KHULNA

Gateway to the Sundarbans, the home of the Royal Bengal Tigers, Khulna is an industrial
and commercial city and the Divisional Headquarters. The Mongla Sea Port is located
nearby. Some of the biggest jute mills in the country are located here. Khulna is
connected with Dhaka by rail, road, river and air.

SHUNDARBAN

Fascinating tropical forest covering 2,316 square miles of deltaic swamp alongwith the
coastal fringe of the southern most part of Bangladesh. The Sundarbans is the natural
habitat of many of the wild life like crocodile, dotted deer , python, wild bear, monkey
and the famous Royal Bengal Tiger.

RAJSHAHI

The royal seat of the Pala kings of ancient Bengal, Rajshahi is the main centre of
sericulture, mangoes, lichis and spices. A centre of education and culture, Rajshahi has a
rich museum with research facility for study of ancient history and culture. It is
connected with Dhaka by air, road and rail.

BOGRA

This district town serves as the nerve centre of northern Bangladesh and the entrance to
the oldest archaeological site of the 3rd century B.C. It is connected with Dhaka by rail
and road.

SYLHET

The land of tea gardens. Sylhet is famous for its Manipuri tribe and their dances. Its cane
and cane products are equally fascinating. The hills in the north add to its natural beauty.
It is connected with Dhaka by rail, road and air.

MAINAMATI

Five miles to the west of Comilla town, lies a range of low hills known as the Mainamoti-
Lalmai range. It was an important seat of Buddhist culture. Large scale excavations have
revealed valuable facts about Buddhist rulers who flourished here as independent kings

157
during the 7th and 8th centuries. The whole range of hillocks, about 11 miles long, is
believed to be studded with more than 50 Buddhist archaeological sites.

KUAKATA

Kuakata, the 25 KM long sea beach situated at the periphery of the southern part of
Patuakhali is a potential tourist resort. It provides a unique opportunity to witness both
sun rise and sun set. The local Rakhain population has rich cultural tradition and their
hospitality is well known. The 200 acres dense forest gives the beach a pleasant look and
it serves as a wall against tidal bore. A Buddhist pagoda is located at the sea-shore and a
statue of Buddha weighing over 1.5 metric tons is preserved inside the Pagoda.

158
CHAPTER FIVE

“THREATS”

159
 NATURAL DISASTERS

Climate change now occupies the top of the environmental concerns that impede progress
in socioeconomic development and threaten human security. Global warming resulting
from various human activities causes sea level rise that affects low level coastal areas in
the deltas and island nations of the world. In 1990, the Intergovernmental panel on
climate change (IPCC) projected that with a business as usual scenario of green house gas
emission, the world would be 3.30C warmer by 2100 that will cause about one meter rise
in the sea level from thermal expansion and melting of glaciers.

Bangladesh now supports about 145 million people within a land area of 144 km2. It
ranks 11th in the league table of the world with regard to population. With a density of
population of over 1000 per km2 Bangladesh has the distinction of being the most
densely settled country of the world except Singapore. The country has made remarkable
progress in reducing population growth from three to 1.4 percent per year over the last
three decades and has accelerated economic growth from four percent per year during the
first two decades of independence to over six percent during this decade. But the
population is still growing at 1.4 percent adding two million new mouths to be fed every
year. The labor force of about 54 million has been increasing by 1.5 million annually.
Feeding the growing population, improving the quality of the vast human resource, and
generating productive employment for them are big challenge for the policy makers in
the country.

Bangladesh is situated on deltas of large rivers flowing from the Himalayas: The Ganges
unites with Jamuna (the main channel of the Brahmaputra) and later joins the Meghna to
eventually empty in the Bay of Bengal. The country is sloping gently from the north to
the south, meeting the Bay of Bengal in the southern end. The three major rivers and their
numerous tributaries carry water from the catchments of the Himalayas and flood a third
of the country in normal years. When they rise at the same time and the draining to the
sea is impeded by high tide in the sea, the country suffers disastrous floods with
inundation of over 50 percent of the land area. Over the last thirty seven years of its
independence, Bangladesh suffered such devastating floods in 1974, 1987, 1988, 1998,
2004, and 2007. Floods are becoming more frequent allegedly due to climate change.

The frequency and intensity of natural disasters is projected to increase with climate
change and sea level rise. We have already noted that abnormal floods that inundate more
than a third of the country occur with greater frequency. The recent floods takes longer
time to drain, occurs at a later part of the crop with little opportunity for recovery of crop,
and affects towns and cities with huge damage to infrastructure and industrial assets.
Rising sea levels will impede drainage of water southwards from the Himalayas terrain
by the major rivers. This feed back effect can cause penetration of heavier floods further
inland. The storm surge during cyclone may increase to over 9 meters with heavier risks
loss of human and animal lives and destruction of assets. It may be mentioned here that
with frequent exposure to natural disasters, Bangladeshi people have developed resilience
against with learning of how to cope with them. The government and the civil society
have also demonstrated greater effectiveness in managing relief and rehabilitation efforts.

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The farmers in the severe flood-affected zones have changed land use and cropping
patterns that helped minimize damage to agriculture and loss of crops. The building of
cyclone shelters though inadequate in number, and an improved system of cyclone
warnings have helped reduce dead tolls from severe cyclones. The natural disasters now
cause more damage to infrastructures such as house, factories, roads and other transport
network, industrial and business capital, and educational and health institutions. A
severely affected sector is inland fisheries that have vastly expanded in recent years.

 SEA LEVEL

The projected sea level rise poses a significant threat to human security in Bangladesh, a
densely settled country in the world that has 710 km long coast to the Bay of Bengal. A
one meter rise in the sea level will affect the vast coastal area and the inland flood zones
that might be subjected to increased frequency of cyclones and floods from which the
country already suffer. It will pose increased threat of damage to infrastructures,
destruction of fisheries, reduction of cultivated land, crop failures and the loss of
biodiversity.

Sea level rise will affect food and agricultural production by increasing the intensity of
salinity intrusion in the dry season and the depth of flooding in the wet season from tidal
fluctuations. The climate change will increase the frequency of cyclones and occasional
depressions that affect agricultural production through heavy rains and increased velocity
of winds. Salinity intrusion will decrease agricultural production by degrading soils and
reducing availability of fresh water. Already nearly one million ha of land in the east and
the western coast suffer from soil salinity which inhibits adoption of improved varieties
of rice that helped achieve a respectable growth in food production in other parts of
Bangladesh. In the coastal districts farmers still grow mostly tradition lowyielding
varieties and keep the land fallow in the dry season due to higher intensity of soil and
water salinity. The Barisal region (the central coast) was once the food basket of the
country, but it has now become a food deficit region due to continued pressure of
population on fragile land resources, and the sluggish growth in agricultural production.
Sea level rise will further aggravate the unfavorable growing conditions for most
agricultural crops.

It is difficult to predict the direction of impact of sea level rise on fisheries which is an
important source of livelihood of the coastal population at present. Inundated fields and
expansion of estuaries may increase the fish habitat which may have a favorable impact
on fisheries production. Many low lying fields in the coastal belt have now been turned
into fish ponds with marginal investments. Shrimp farming has spread in the region due
to availability of brackish water which is much more profitable than rice farming and is
an important source of foreign exchange earning for the country. The area under shrimp
farms have increased from only 1,330 ha in 1975 to 116,000 ha in 2004. But shrimp
farming has allegedly caused damage to environment and contributed to growing socio-
economic inequity in the region. Higher frequency of cyclones, intensity of tidal surge,
and flooding would make inland fisheries a more risky venture in the region.

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Sea level rise may also increase the risk of health hazards by spreading communicable
diseases (such as diarrhea) due to lack of pure drinking water. Increased stress on the
fresh water zone by saline sea water will decrease drinking water availability in the
region. Due to soil salinity use of tube wells as a source of drinking water is rare in the
region. People usually use ponds as a source of drinking water. The ponds get
contaminated with fallen twigs and leaves of trees during high winds. Outbreak of
diarrhea and cholera is a major health risk after every cyclone because of people drinking
contaminated water from ponds.

The Sundarbans, one of the largest mangrove forests of the world located in the south-
western coast will also be inundated by the sea level rise. The site is home to many of
unique species of plants and rich in biodiversity. Sea level rise will cause rise in the
salinity concentration in the water and soil in the Sundarbans. Increased salinity will
change the habitat pattern of the forest and may increase disease pressure for many
species. Aquatic organisms might migrate inwards because of increased salinity. Some
fear that the sea level rise might destroy the Sundarban entirely causing great loss to
biodiversity. It will affect livelihoods of several million people dependent on forests. It
will also weaken protection of coastal people from cyclones as the mangrove swamps
serve as natural barriers against strong winds and tidal surges.

 CYCLONES

The Bangladesh coast is often devastated by severe cyclonic storms and tidal surges that
take heavy toll on human lives, infrastructure and livelihoods. The devastation caused by
three major cyclones occurred in 1970, 1985, 1991 and 2007 are still vivid in the memory
of the present generation. The November 1990 cyclone with a tidal surge of over nine
meters was accountable for death of 500,000 plus people. The neglect of relief and
rehabilitation in its aftermath by the central government is considered a major factor
behind the breakup of Pakistan and the independence of Bangladesh in 1971. The cyclone
of April 1991 in the eastern coast caused a death toll 139,000 people with an estimated
economic loss of US$ 1.78 billion. The most recent cyclone, Sidr, which struck the
southwestern coast on November 15, 2007 with a wind velocity of up to 250 km per hour
took a toll of 3,3363 people with another 871 missing. It affected 2.06 million households
and 8.96 million people and destroyed crops in about 2.5 million ha of land.

The Bay of Bengal is the breeding ground for tropical cyclones and Bangladesh is the
worst victim in terms of fatalities and economic losses incurred. The global distribution
of cyclones shows that only 1% of all the cyclones that form every year strike
Bangladesh, but, unfortunately, the fatalities they cause are 53% of the whole world
total.4 The following table lists a few of the devastating cyclones that have affected
Bangladesh.

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 FLOOD

Bangladesh is a low land country. Most of it is located within the flood plains of three
great rivers, which is the Ganges, the Brahmaputra, and the Meghna, their tributaries, and
distributaries. The river systems drain a total area of about 1.72 million square kilometers
in India, China, Nepal, Bhutan, and Bangladesh. Only 8% of this area lies within
Bangladesh.

As a result, huge inflows of water, which Bangladesh has no control, enter the country.
The lack of control is a critical problem because Bangladesh has an agrarian economy
dependent on water. At different times and in an unpredictable manner it has too much or
too little water. The intricate network of alluvial rivers carries a huge annual discharge
and sediment load, causing channel shifting and bank erosion. Withdrawals in upstream
areas seriously affect socioeconomic growth, the environment, and the ecology. The
habitat of fish, which is a major source of protein for the rural poor, is under threat from
the increasing conversion of land to agricultural use. Inland navigation is hindered by
blockages in the river delta. Meanwhile, the need for pure water is increasing along with
the salinization of the coastal belt and the degradation of ecosystems.

As an example of the above described situation, during the July 2004 event, the Megna
River peaked, and Jamuna and Padma Rivers burst their banks. As a result, 36 million
people, 25% of the total population, was affected, and 38% of the whole area of the
country was flooded for nearly 55 days. To further complicate the scenario, in September
of the same year, monsoon rains three times larger than normal flooded new areas.5 The
flood of 1988 during August-September inundated an area of 89,000 sq km of 52 districts
of the country and caused a loss of 1,517 human lives. The 1998 flood in Bangladesh
with an unprecedented duration of 65 days inundated 53 districts, covering about 100,000
sq km, and took the lives of 918 people. Beside this, the severe floods of 1822, 1854,
1922, 1955, 1966, 1974, 1987, and 2002 are worth mentioning.

Chronology of big floods:

1954 On August 2, Dhaka district went under water. On August 1 flood peak of the
jamuna river at Sirajganj was 14.22m and on August 30 flood peak of the Ganges
river at hardinge bridge was 14.91m.

1955 More than 30% of Dhaka district was flooded. The flood level of the buriganga
exceeded the highest level of 1954.

1962 The flood occurred twice, once in July and again in August and September. Many
people were affected and crops and valuable properties were damaged.

1966 One of the most serious floods that ever visited Dhaka occurred on 8 June 1966.
The flood level was almost the highest in the history of Sylhet district too. A
storm on the morning of 12 June 1966 made the situation grave. About 25% of
houses were badly damaged, 39 people died and 10,000 cattle were lost, and

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about 1,200,000 people were affected. On September 15 Dhaka city became
stagnant due to continuous rainfall for 52 hours, which resulted in pools of water
1.83m deep for about 12 hours.

1968 Severe flood in Sylhet district and about 700,000 people were badly affected.

1969 Chittagong district fell in the grip of flood caused by heavy rainfall. Crops and
valuable property were damaged

1974 In Mymensingh about 10,360 sq km area was flooded. People and cattle were
severely affected and more than 100,000 houses were destroyed.

1987 Catastrophic flood occurred in July-August. Affected 57,300 sq km (about 40% of


the total area of the country) and estimated to be a once in 30-70 year event.
Excessive rainfall both inside and outside of the country was the main cause of
the flood. The seriously affected regions were on the western side of the
Brahmaputra, the area below the confluence of the Ganges and the Brahmaputra,
considerable areas north of Khulna and finally some areas adjacent to the
Meghalaya hills.

1988 Catastrophic flood occurred in August-September. Inundated about 82,000 sq km


(about 60% of the area) and its return period is estimated to be 50-100 years.
Rainfall together with synchronisation of very high flows of all the three major
rivers of the country in only three days aggravated the flood. Dhaka, the capital of
Bangladesh, was severely affected. The flood lasted 15 to 20 days.

1989 Flooded Sylhet, sirajganj and maulvi bazar and 600,000 people were trapped by
water.

1993 Severe rains all over the country, thousands of hectares of crops went under
water. Twenty-eight districts were flooded.

1998 Over two-thirds of the total area of the country was flooded. It compares with the
catastrophic flood of 1988 so far as the extent of flooding is concerned. A
combination of heavy rainfall within and outside the country, synchronisation of
peak flows of the major rivers and a very strong backwater effect coalesced into a
mix that resulted in the worst flood in recorded history. The flood lasted for more
than two months.

2000 Five southwestern districts of Bangladesh bordering India were devastated by


flood rendering nearly 3 million people homeless. The flood was caused due to
the outcome of the failure of small river dykes in West Bengal that were
overtopped by excessive water collected through heavy downpour.

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 EARTHQUAKE

Bangladesh lies in the Burma basin, which was formed by the continentcontinent
collision of India to the north, and subduction of ocean crust beneath the Burma
continental crust to the east. Bangladesh is surrounded by regions of high seismicity,
which include the Himalayan Arc and Shillong Plateau in the north, the Burmese Arc,
Arakan Yoma anticlinorium in the east, and complex Naga Disang-Haflong thrust zone in
the northeast.The country has a long history of seismic activity related to its proximity to
the Himalayas.

Three great earthquakes of magnitudes exceeding 8 were felt in 1897, 1934, and 1950,
and another four earthquakes exceeding magnitude 7 were felt between 1869 and 1950.
Major seismic sources are the Meghalaya (8.0), Tripura (7.0), Sub-Dauki (7.3), and
Bogra (7.0), all of them with associated earthquakes of expected magnitudes higher or
equal to 7.0.8

 ARSENIC

Nearly 40,000 people showing the skin lesions symptoms characteristic of arsenicosis
have been identified in Bangladesh. Arsenicosis symptoms can include lesions, hardening
of the skin, dark spots on hands and feet, swollen limbs and loss of feeling from hands
and legs. Lesions are easily infected, pose a threat of gangrene and can be very painful.
While there is a long latency of more than 20 years, lesions can appear more quickly if
arsenic concentrations are very high. However, these symptoms are usually reversible if
detected early and people stop drinking arsenic-contaminated water.

Long-term exposure to arsenic can cause serious health problems including internal
cancers of the skin, lungs, bladder and kidney, which can be fatal. These cancers can
occur without the skin lesions. Most of the deaths caused by arsenic are expected to be
from lung cancer. Studies have shown exposure to arsenic contaminated water can also
cause impaired cognitive development in children. Malnourished people are twice as
likely to develop arsenicosis as well-nourished people. There is no known cure for
chronic arsenic poisoning.

However, people suffering from arsenicosis can recover more rapidly from skin lesions
when they eat nutritious food or take multi-vitamin supplements. Lotions containing urea
and salicylic acid can ease the pain of skin lesions, and also help to speed recovery.

Social Impacts:
People with arsenic poisoning suffer enormous social stigma in Bangladesh. Many people
believe arsenic poisoning is contagious or a curse. Parents are reluctant to let their
children play with children suffering arsenic poisoning and patients can be shunned
within their villages. For women, the situation is worse. In Bangladesh, a woman's
attractiveness lies in her beauty which is often judged by her pale complexion. This
makes it harder, in some cases impossible, for single women suffering from arsenic

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poisoning to marry. Once married, women face the risk of divorce if they develop
arsenicosis skin lesions. This can be a dire situation in Bangladesh's male-dominated
society, where unmarried women are more vulnerable to poverty and social exclusion.
Women are also less likely to receive early diagnosis or treatment.

 POLLUTION IN BANGLADESH

AIR POLLUTION:

Air Pollution contamination of the atmosphere caused by the discharge, accidental or


deliberate of a wide range of toxic substances. Often the amount of the released substance
is relatively high in a certain locality, so the harmful effects are more noticeable. The
major sources of air pollution are transportation engines, power and heat generation,
industrial processes and the burning of solid waste. A new source of air pollution is an
increasing 'hole' in the ozone layer in the atmosphere above Antarctica, coupled with
growing evidence of global ozone depletion. Air pollution has also long been known to
have an adverse effect on human beings, plants, livestock and aquatic ecosystem through
acid rain.

Recently as in other parts of the world air pollution has received priority among
environmental issues in Asia. This problem is acute in dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh
and also the hub of commercial activity. The other urban areas like chittagong, khulna,
bogra and rajshahi have much lesser health problem related to air pollution. In urban
areas sometimes the houses are built on rocks and soils, which radiate radioactive gas
from their basement. If this gas is inhaled for a long time it may cause lung cancer. In the
rural areas of Bangladesh, the air pollution problems have not yet become a point of
concern. This is due to fewer motorised vehicles and industries there. However, brick
kilns and cooking stoves are the principal sources of emission in rural areas. In villages
wood, coal, and biomass are used as sources of energy. Thus, it is likely that in those
areas the principal air contaminants are particulate matter and volatile organic
compounds (VOCs).

Basically, there are two major sources of air pollution in Bangladesh industrial emissions
and vehicular emissions. The industrial sources include brick kilns, fertiliser factories,
sugar, paper, jute and textile mills, spinning mills, tanneries, garment, bread and biscuit
factories, chemical and pharmaceutical industries, cement production and processing
factories, metal workshops, and wooden dust from saw mills and dusts from ploughed
land, and salt particles from ocean waves near the offshore islands and coastal lands.
These sources produce enormous amount of smokes, fumes, gases and dusts, which
create the condition for the formation of fog and smog. Certain industries in Bangladesh,
such as tanneries at Hazaribag in Dhaka City, emit hydrogen sulphide, ammonia,
chlorine, and some other odorous chemicals that are poisonous and cause irritation and
public complaints. This may cause headache and other health problems.

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With increased rate of urbanisation in the country, the number of vehicles is also
increasing rapidly, and contributing to more and more air pollution. The Department of
Environment (DOE), and other related organisations, have identified the two-stroke
engines used in autorickshaws (baby-taxies), tempos, mini-trucks, and motorcycles as
major polluters. At present, there are about 65,000 baby-taxies among them more than
296,000 motor vehicles ply in Dhaka City alone. Moreover, overloaded, poorly
maintained and very old trucks and mini-buses are also plying the city streets emitting
smokes and gases. In fact about 90% of the vehicles that ply Dhaka's streets daily are
faulty, and emit smoke far exceeding the prescribed limit. Diesel vehicles emit black
smoke, which contain unburned fine carbon particles.

The two-stroke engines are now discouraged in Bangladesh because of their pollution
hazard. In view of the serious automobile pollution faced in the metropolis, an initiative
was taken with World Bank support to introduce big buses in the city and discourage the
ply ing of small automobiles, including baby-taxis. The introduction of air-conditioned
city bus service is an outcome of that initiative.

Sophisticated equipment is now being used to detect air polluters in Bangladesh. As such,
four monitoring stations are set up at four divisional towns, namely, Dhaka, Chittagong,
Khulna, and Bogra. In Dhaka the locations of vehicular emission test are at Tejgaon,
Farmgate, Manik Mia Avenue, Gulshan, Lalmatia, and Agargaon. bangladesh university
of engineering and technology (BUET) has also been conducting ambient air quality
surveys since 1995.

The air quality standards are different for residential, industrial, commercial, and
sensitive areas. The worst affected areas in Dhaka city include: Hatkhola, Manik Mia
Avenue, Tejgaon, Farmgate, Motijheel, Lalmatia, and Mohakhali. Surveys conducted
between January 1990 and December 1999 showed that the concentration of suspended
particles goes up to as high as 3,000 micrograms per cubic meter (Police Box, Farmgate,
December 1999), although the allowable limit is 400 micrograms per cubic meter. The
sulphur dioxide in the air near Farmgate was found to be 385 micrograms per cubic
meter, where as the maximum permissible limit is 100 micrograms per cubic meter.
Similarly, in the Tejgaon Industrial Area the maximum concentration of suspended
particles was 1,849 micrograms per cubic meter (January 1997), as opposed to the
allowable limit of 500 micrograms per cubic meter. Usually the maximum concentration
of air pollution in Dhaka is during the dry months of December to March.

The bangladesh atomic energy commission (BAEC) and the Bangladesh Council of
Scientific and Industrial Research (BCSIR), in collaboration with the DOE, recently
assessed the concentration of lead in the ambient air. The dhaka shishu hospital in
association with the BAEC also estimated the level of lead in the blood of children of
Dhaka City and the possible impact of leaded gasoline on them. The Bangladesh Road
Transport Authority (BRTA) is also setting up a vehicle emission monitoring station at
Mirpur, Dhaka.

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Prior to introduction of unleaded gasoline, BAEC reported that the air that city dwellers
breathe on the roads contains lead in concentrations almost ten times above the
government safety standard set by the DOE. The air of Dhaka City holds 463 nanograms
per cubic meter of lead - the highest in the world. From November 96 to March 97 the
lead levels in three different areas of Dhaka City were 123-252 nanograms per cubic
meter at Farmgate area and 61 to 76 nanograms per cubic meter in Tejgaon Industrial
area.

The lead poisoning produces neuro-developmental disorders in children. About 50 tons of


lead is emitted in the Dhaka air annually and the emission reaches its highest level in the
dry season from November to January. Lead poisoning has been detected recently in
children at the Shishu Bikash Kendro (Child Development Centre) of Dhaka Shishu
Hospital. Lead concentrations, measured around 80-micrograms/dl-to180 micrograms/dl
in the tested children's blood, is 7-16 times more than the acceptable limit. The safe
concentration advocated by the US Centre for Disease Control and Prevention is 10
micrograms/dl. People living in urban slums have a significant rise in mean blood lead
levels, compared to those living in urban middle-income or rural areas. The development
of lead pollution could also affect the central nervous system, cause renal damage and
hypertension. Excessive lead in the blood of children could damage-their brain and
kidney. Children are three times more at risk than adults are by exposure to lead
poisoning.

In Dhaka city the mean blood lead level of rickshaw pullers is 248 micrograms/dl (range
154-344 micrograms/dl), baby-taxi drivers 287 micrograms/dl, traffic police 272
micrograms/dl (range 152-32 micrograms/dl), tempo assistants 255 micrograms/dl, and
petrol pump operators 249 micrograms/dl (range 207-342 micrograms/dl). The mean
blood lead level among these risk groups is found to be higher than the acceptable value,
with traffic police being the worst affected group. The blood lead levels usually increased
with duration of exposure.

During July 1999 the Government of Bangladesh (GOB) executed the decision to provide
only unleaded gasoline in the country. According to recent measurements between late
1999 and 2000 by BAEC and eastern refinery limited (ERL) the gasoline dispensed at
pumps in Bangladesh is now totally free of lead.

It has been found that Dhaka city has VOC beyond tolerable limits, some of which cause
cancer. Emissions from two-stroke auto-rickshaws in Dhaka were found to contain 4 to 7
times the maximum permissible level of VOC.

Dust pollution is causing many respiratory diseases, including asthma. Recently, 200
organic compounds are detected by analysing four air samples collected from the
Shewrapara area of the city. As far as the VOC is concerned the following worst affected
areas are identified: Hatkhola, Manik Mian Avenue, Tejgaon, Farm Gate, Motijheel,
Lalmatia, and the inter-district bus terminals. Surveys conducted between December
1996 and June 1997 showed that the concentration of suspended particles goes up to as
high as 2,465 micrograms per cubic metre as against the allowable limit of 400

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micrograms per cubic metre at Farm Gate. In Tejgaon Industrial Area, on the other hand,
the maximum con centration of suspended particles was 630 micrograms as against the
allowable limit of 500 micrograms per cubic metre.

Mine air pollution a major issue of concern in Bangladesh. Dust and mine gases create
problems for coalmine. Fortunately barapukuria coal of dinajpur district has insignificant
gas content, therefore, in the process of mining of coal the danger of methane emission
and methane gas related hazards are considered to be insignificant. As the Barapukuria
coal will be mined mechanically, huge coal dusts would be generated but proper
mitigation measures if taken coal dust could be controlled. Huge dusts will also be
generated in the Maddhyapara hardrock mine in Dinajpur district, due to frequent
movements of heavy vehicles together with required loading and unloading operations.
The gases formed by the combustion of coal, fuel and lubricants in the mine both at the
surface and underground pollute the ambient air. Dusts generated from coal and
hardrocks especially during cutting, blasting, crashing and transportation in the mines are
generally the cause of concern for the miners and for the surrounding localities.

Water is considered polluted when it is altered from the natural state in its physical
condition, and chemical and microbiological composition, so that it becomes unsuitable
or less suitable for any safe and beneficial consumption. The term contamination is used
synonymously with pollution. The signs of water pollution are obvious: bad taste;
offensive odours from lakes, rivers and sea beaches; unchecked growth of aquatic weeds
in water bodies; decrease in number of aquatic animals in surface water bodies; oil and
grease floating on water surfaces; colouration of water; etc. Besides these obvious signs,
there are other kinds of pollution, which are not so visible.

Sources of pollution Factories, power plants and sewage treatment plants are considered
point sources of water pollution, because they emit pollutants at discrete locations,
usually through a pipe that leads to a lake or stream. Nonpoint sources of water pollution
are scattered or diffused. Cropland, forests, urban and suburban lands, roadways, and
parking lots are nonpoint sources of a variety of substances including dust, sediment,
pesticides, asbestos, fertiliser, heavy metals, salts, oil, grease, litter, and even air
pollutants washed down from the sky by rain.

Water pollution can also be categorised into natural and anthropogenic sources. Natural
sources are those which take place without human influence. Anthropogenic pollution are
those which are induced by human beings. Natural pollution can also be accentuated by
human activities.

WATER POLLUTION:

Pollution takes place in all the three main sources of water, ie rain water, surface water
and groundwater. Surface water is more susceptible than groundwater, which is naturally
protected from surface activities.

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Rainwater pollution Acid rain damages forests and may cause significant decrease in
productivity. Numerous authors have also raised concern for crop damage. Acid rain is
particularly damaging to buds; therefore, acids falling on plants in springtime may impair
growth. Acidification of soil may also impair soil bacteria that play an important role in
nutrient cycling and nitrogen fixation. Acid rain is also capable of corroding manmade
structures. Examples of such corrosion are: the Statue of Liberty, the Canadian
Parliament in Ottawa and Egypt's temple at Karnak. Acid rain may also damage house
paint and etch the surfaces of automobiles. There is no record of acid rain in Bangladesh.
However, due to extensive air pollution in Dhaka city, it is very likely that rain water in
Dhaka would be more acidic than rain water in rural areas.

Surface water pollution Surface water occurs in oceans, rivers, lakes, ponds and
floodplains. It has been the source of water supply since the dawn of civilisation. But
intense human activities have been polluting these readily available sources. Surface
water used to be the primary source of water supply in Bangladesh, but it is no longer the
case. Surface water in Bangladesh is extensively polluted by sources such as industrial
and urban wastes, agrochemicals and sewerage wastes and seawater intrusion. Surface
water bodies are extensively used for disposal of untreated industrial wastes and this is
one of the main sources of pollution. The buriganga is a typical example of serious
surface water contamination. Apart from industrial sources, surface water in the country
is also extensively contaminated by human faeces as sanitation in general is poor.
Agrochemicals are extensively used in the country causing pollution of surface water.
Due to withdrawal of water from the ganges, seawater intrudes a long way inside the
coastline which causes river water pollution by salinity. There are also other minor
sources that contaminate surface water extensively.

Groundwater pollution although groundwater is not directly exposed to surface polluting


activities, numerous natural and anthropogenic activities cause groundwater pollution. A
number of physical, chemical and biochemical (and microbiological) processes cause
alteration of groundwater properties either by addition of new elements/ions/compounds
or by increasing the existing concentrations. Before the discovery of arsenic
contamination in Bangladesh, groundwater used to be considered a safer source of
drinking water. Arsenic contamination of groundwater in Bangladesh is now considered
the world's largest case of water pollution. Groundwater in Bangladesh is also polluted by
a number of anthropogenic and natural sources. The most widespread anthropogenic
sources are the infiltration of industrial and urban wastes disposed on the ground or in
surface water bodies. Also intrusion or infiltration of saline water contaminates
groundwater. Extensive use of agrochemicals can lead to groundwater pollution. Leaking
sewers/septic tanks/pit latrines also cause groundwater pollution.

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 POPULATION GROWTH IN BANGLADESH

Bangladesh is one of the most densely populated countries in the world having a
population of about 129 million at present within a total surface area of 147,570 sq. km.
The density of population is 850 per sq. km, which is one of the highest in the world. The
annual growth rate of population is 1.7 percent, which has gradually declined in the
recent years. The fertility rate, which is above 4 per woman, is high but is gradually
declining. The sex ratio is 106: 100 male/female. About 43 percent people are below the
age of 15, and as a result the dependency ratio among the people is also very high. The
population structure is pyramidal where the under-aged groups (below 15 years) occupy
about 43% of the total population, and the economically active population is only about
35% (45 million) of the total population. The average literacy rate is 37 percent, which is
again lower in rural areas (BBS, 1996).

Rapid Growth of Urban Population:

Bangladesh has been experiencing a rapid growth in urbanization since 1961. The
proportion of urban population increased gradually from 5.2 % in 1961 to 20% in 1991
with an average growth of about 7 % per year. Inability of rural economy and agriculture
to absorb the growing population, a drastic fall in the availability of arable and cropped
land, landlessness, fall of real income etc., pushed the rural poor to migrate to the cities.
Unfortunately, majority of the recently migrated people could not be provided with good
job in the formal sectors and accommodation in the cities, and most them are living in
urban slums. The urban areas expanded in an unplanned way without adequate
infrastructure and public amenities and facilities (including housing, water and power
supply, sanitation, waste disposal) that increases air and water pollution in the city areas.

Impact of Population on Environment:

Consumption needs of a growing population exert pressure on environment in a number


of ways. For meeting the additional requirement of food, either extensive or intensive
cultivation or both are taken recourse to. In the former case, marginal land is brought
under cultivation, which leads to erosion and loss of soil fertility. Often, people make
new cropland by encroaching and clearing forests leading to degradation of forest.
Deforestation in turns causes soil erosion, siltation and flooding in river basins, changes
in microclimate and loss of habitat. When cultivation extends to low-lying areas, the
traditional habitat of fish is encroached upon. Shrinkage of pastureland adversely affects
both quantity and quality of livestock resources. In the latter case, when intensive
cultivation is practiced on the same of shrinking agricultural land (due to increased
demand generated for housing and construction of social and physical infrastructural
facilities by the additional population, the following problems are normally encountered:
increased run off and ecological hazards form chemical Fertilizers and pesticides,
reduced genetic diversity in the plant population, water logging and salinity from
irrigation. In order to absorb the growing labour force in productive employment, there
hardly exists any option other than industrialization. Rapid urbanization putting
unbearable pressure on an already overburdened system, particularly, water supply and

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sewerage, however, usually accompany this. Incidence of air pollution is also more due to
an increasing number of buses, trucks and cars. Increased industrial production for
meeting consumption and investment demands of a growing population uses up an
increasing amount of raw materials including minerals and energy. In the process, this
not only depletes the country’s natural resource base, but also adds to industrial pollution
and thereby degrades the environment of the country. Environmental impacts of a
growing population are much sharper in a developing country as the pursuit of
development, an improvement in the standard of living and quality of life of the people,
exerts grater pressure on environmental resources. Growth presupposes investment.
Higher investment, therefore, obviously implies a speedier depletion of environmental
resources. Development projects implemented without proper environmental impact
assessment often cause major environmental hazards. When a country experiences
inequitable growth i. e. when the fruits of growth are not shared equally and skewness of
income distribution accentuates resource depletion, environmental degradation proceeds
at a quicker pace. On the one hand, production and consumption patterns get distorted in
favor of high energy intensive products demanded by the rich; on the other hand, the poor
and the unemployed are forced to eke out their living from open access natural resources,
such as open water fishery, resulting in depletion of stock through over-exploitation of
such resources.

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RECOMMENDATION

From the discussion so far made, it is clear that there are ample for improvement of
project implementation performance. The following measures may be suggested in
order to overcome the problems of implementation as identified:

1. Develop indigenous skills for project implementation


2. Develop technicians sensitive to national needs, constraints and opportunities
instead of imposing a well-develop system suitable for developed countries.
3. Reinstate the project Evaluation Committee for proper verification and scrutiny
of the projects from the macro point of view.
4. Project approval procedures should be simplified and shortcut so that valuable
time is not wasted and thus time overruns saved.
5. Recruitment of project staff and foreign consultants should be made in time.
6. Procurement of foreign goods should be done timely.
7. There must be appropriate budget provision so that fund can be released
smoothly.
8. Customs formalities should be simplified for quick clearance of the goods from
the port.
9. Periodic review and evaluation should done so that inter-agency co-ordination
can be achieved.
10. The creation of an independent division, probably under the cabinet security,
responsible for public procurement policy, law, procedures and documents, and
oversight of public procurement.
11. The passage of a public procurement law.
12. The adoption of standard rules and procedures and biddings and contract
documents and their publication.
13. The adoption of procedures which would simplify and streamline procurement,
especially to reduce the number of bureaucratic layers involved.
14. Some of the recommendations were particularity aimed at increasing the
transparency of procurement.
15. Strategy to address the challenges of TRIPS: Each country in the region should
give the highest to formulating appropriate polices, policy measure and laws or
legal provisions regarding patents and access to medicines.
16. We must have responsible and accountable governance.
Responsible governance would mean the following:-
i) An efficient and responsible political system.
ii) An efficient and fair bureaucracy.
iii) An efficient judiciary system.
iv) An enlightened and vocal public.
17. Our bureaucratic laws and not conductive to develop.
Our laws need drastic changes to make them conductive to industrialization. Our
Laws are still based on the colonial principal of generation instead of
development. For proper project management the authority should carry out
required changes in the existing laws.

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18. Facilitating export:
Bangladesh has adopted an export oriented growth strategy and recognizes that
in the effective operation of the multilateral trading system lies its vital interest.
And rightly emphasizes for conscious policy shifts in order to facilitate growth.
 Changes in the trade regime.
 To have contributed to a boom in export earnings.
 The export boom has been driven by the garments industry.
 And has resulted in an improvement in the current account deficit.
19. Managing foreign investment:
 FDI outflows present a challenge.
 Ensuring balance of payments sustainability will necessitate that export
earning raise commensurately.
 Gas and gas-based product exports provide valuable foreign exchange.
 Fiscal sustainability will require the power sector.
 Inappropriate pricing policy and continued high system loses will
undermine the benefits of FDI.
 Better reporting of FDI related flows is essential.
20. Reforming the financial system:
 Reforming the legal framework.
 Improving Governance
1. Good management is an important pillar of a sound banking
system.
2. Improving auditing & accounting standard.
3. Developing financial country systems.
 Empowering Bangladesh Bank:
1. A weak central bank is enforce standards.
2. Overstaffing and labor unions.
3. Strengthening regulatory and supervisory capacity.
4. Developing professional excellence.
 Restructuring the NCB and PDB.
 Prioritizing & sequencing.
 The role of Micro-credit: The recent floods have created a challenge for
the sustainability of Micro-credit.

21. Maintaining Macro Stability:


 A stable macro economy environment is very much necessary by
coordinating fiscal, monetary and exchange rate policies and promoting
export led growth.
 Fiscal stability.
 Managing contingent liabilities.
 Improving effectiveness of Government expenditures.
 Augmenting the revenue effort.
 Supportive monetary & exchange rate management.
 Monitory policy in recent years has been broadly supportive of the
Government’s effort to maintain macro credit stability.

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24. Managing water resources:
Heavy rainfall during the monsoon period & water shortage during the annual
dry season create regular fluctuation in water supply that already point to the
need for planning regulating flows so as to conserve water, when it is in excess
and for use, when scarcity follows:
 The threats: Four distinct kinds of problems related to water supplies and
their management.
-Contamination -Salinity
-Shortage -Sanitation
Pollution of water resources specially drinking water.
 New opportunities: A number of recent development offer promising
opportunities to generate a new but realistic vision of water’s long-term
future in Bangladesh and to put that vision into practice. Among the most
significant are:
1. Preparation of a long-term national water plan.
2. Ganges water treaty.
 Indian-Bangladesh treaty for Farakka.
 Improve local government.
 Institutional reforms.
 Restoration of the regions fundamental resource and safeguard
these from further degradation.
 Sustain flows into the Gorai cost effectively & thereby check
saline instruction & project the sundrabans.
 Reduce national and regional dependence on ground water,
safeguarding rural, urban and industrial water supplies.
 Increasing agriculture production through irrigation of a least one
million hectares.
 Provide a vital communication link across the Ganges for traffic,
gas, and power, consulting significantly to overall economic
development.
 Raise the lining standards throughout the region though increased
agriculture employment, food production and health standards.
 Flood control and drainage.
 Improve barrages & water conservation structure.
 River training, dredging and desilation by labour
in expected to become increasingly important.
 Improving forecasting system of flood warning and irrigation.
 Regional and sub-regional cooperation in the water sactor.
 Estuary control for disaster management, salinity control and
conversation of fresh water could help Bangladesh to protect the
coastal belt from vulnerability against storm surges.
 Construction of cross dams in the coastal belt for land accretion
and erosion control.

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REFERENCES

1. CIA the world fact book


2. Bangladesh Bureau of Educational Informational and Statistics
3. Wikipedia The Free Encyclopedia
4. T.C. Malhotra is a New Delhi, India-based journalist. January/February 2006
5. Textile World Asia.2006/2007
6. BBS, 2006 and Handbook Agricultural Statistics, Ministry of Agriculture
7. Mazid M A, 2002. Development of Fisheries in Bangladesh
8. World Bank, DANIDA, USAID, FAO, DFID, 2003. Fisheries Sector Review and
Future Development
9. Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation
10. Survey of Bangladesh
11. Ministry of Environment and Forest
12. Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources
13. Ministry of Disaster Management & Relief
14. Ministry of Establishment
15. Ministry of Finance
16. Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock
17. Ministry of Industries
18. Ministry of Information
19. Implementation Monitoring and Evaluation Division
20. Ministry of Water Resources
21. Bangladesh economic association; Journals
22. Bangladesh project management environment by Skylark Chadha
23. Tea board of Bangladesh
24. Managing project in Bangladesh by Skylark Chadha
25. Asian development bank reports
26. World bank reports
27. Bangladesh Knitwear Manufactures & Exporters Association
28. Board of Investment, Bangladesh
29. Association of Recruiting Agencies Engaged in Manpower Export
30. Petrobangla
31. Sustainable Development Networking Programme
32. Bangladesh Telecommunications Company Ltd.

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