Economics | The Daily Star
  • Why the third world should be worried about technological revolution

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

  • Paying a high price

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

  • Buoyant but not resilient

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

  • Bringing multinationals to the stock market

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

  • Bangladesh's offensive and defensive interests

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

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

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

  • Why tax cuts don't always boost GDP

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

  • Emerging markets at risk again

    Emerging market governments often draw lessons from previous financial crises—or at least claim to do so—to prevent their recurrence. However, such preventive measures are typically designed to address the causes of the last crisis, not the next one.

  • World economic outlook for 2017 and beyond

    The year 2017 can be chalked down as a prosperous one for the world economy. Wherever we live, as we celebrate the end of a good year, we also welcome the incoming year, which, by all indications, we hope, will be a better one.

  • Bearing the economic cost of the Rohingya crisis

    Bangladesh has been taking in Rohingya refugees from Myanmar since the 70s, right after independence, and the rate accelerated in the 1990s. Currently, we are sheltering, feeding, and providing various assistance to well over a million refugees and it is possible that the situation might get worse before it gets better.

  • Bangladesh losing its geo-economic importance to Myanmar

    The Rohingya refugee crisis has exposed Bangladesh's diplomatic weaknesses. No permanent member of the United Nations Security Council has strongly backed Dhaka to solve the refugee problem.

  • The youth prioritises agriculture

    Discussions about development spending and reducing Bangladesh's climate vulnerability are often dominated—understandably—by politicians and donors. These are the decision-makers who affect how funds are spent.

  • Reading behind the numbers

    We have some good news to cheer. According to a report published by the World Economic Forum (WEF) Bangladesh has become more competitive in 2017 as compared with 2016.

  • Debunking the myth of clean coal

    The debate over the excessive reliance on coal-based thermal power generation has very little to do with our negligible role in the exponential accumulation of atmospheric GHGs. Just to give you some context, in 2013, coal's share in power generation was about three percent. The 2016 Power Sector Master Plan proposes to raise it to 50 percent, totalling about 20,000 megawatts by 2030.

  • Transforming electricity consumers into producers

    Tapping solar energy, Bangladesh has been able to provide access to electricity to over 12 percent of her population outside the grid network through the installation of more than 4.5 million solar home systems. Despite its huge potential, however, consumers of grid-connected electricity are yet to exploit the power of the sun to their advantage.

  • Running the final mile

    Bangladesh has endorsed elimination of poverty as a national goal, and the country can be proud of its achievements in this respect during the last 25 years.

  • Are we entering into a "jobless" growth phase in South Asia?

    Jobless" growth is the phenomenon when an economy experiences growth without an expansion of jobs. In recent times, South Asia is considered to be the fastest growing region in the world.

  • Greece is not out of the woods, yet

    For many years now, Greece has been considered the “sick man” of the European Union (EU). The Greek economy was on the verge of collapse right after the major world economic...

  • How to stimulate the stock market?

    One common discourse in the financial and policy arena of Bangladesh is the idea that higher rate on national savings schemes discourages investment in the stock market.

  • SDG Targets: Can we get there by 2030?

    The title of this essay may raise a few eyebrows in Bangladesh. Bangladesh has already embraced the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and there is no doubt that the government and civil society are marching ahead to reach the various targets.

  • Rising current account deficit: How vulnerable are we?

    First things first, let's recall that a current account shows the flow of goods and services, primary and secondary income between a country and the rest of the world.

  • Can Bangladesh become a welfare state?

    The National Social Security Strategy approved by the Cabinet in 2015 points to a strong political commitment of Bangladesh to become a welfare state.

  • What ails the commercial research industry?

    Here is an example of an organisation that benefitted substantially from research: Courtyard by Marriott found out that business travellers needed hassle-free service, relevant information, and time to relax during their travels. They made their check-in and check-out procedures efficient; seeded their website with maps, restaurant types and locations, and promotional materials; and introduced quiet lounges which didn't have music or TV noise to cause distraction. I don't need to elaborate on Marriott's customer satisfaction ratings or their bottom line!

  • The biggest disruption is in jobs

    The 20th Anniver-sary of the Asian financial crisis and 10th Anniversary of the North Atlantic financial crisis brought back a sense of déjà vu—we have been here before.

  • UK'S trade and development commitment to Bangladesh

    Trade flourishes where there are high levels of education, developed financial sectors, strong governance, accountable institutions, and transparency that combats corruption.

  • Instilling a strong work ethic early in life

    . On one side, commentators are rightly holding the government accountable to generate enhanced youth-based human capital growth. However, on the other side, we also need to look at non-public policy factors which are preventing individuals in Bangladesh from being employed.

  • Are South Asian countries ready to meet the targets of SDGs by 2030?

    How should we read the SDGs as far as the priorities of the South Asian countries are concerned? In my view, SDG 7 (affordable and clean energy), SDG 8 (decent work and economic growth) and SDG 9 (industry, innovation, and infrastructure) are at the heart of priorities mainly because of the fact that South Asian countries have national priorities aligned with these SDGs, and more importantly, these SDGs have strong linkages with other SDGs.

  • Budgetary allocation for energy is not enough

    Has the finance minister addressed these issues and is this budget adequate to meet the challenges stated above? An equally important issue is this: do the responsible agencies have the capacity and capability of implementing such a large budget?

  • The curious case of rice price hike

    A minister was telling me the other day that if people don't mind spending Tk. 300 on a cheese burger, why can't they afford a little more for rice?

  • Budget without a basis

    Our finance minister has proposed a mega budget of Tk 4,00,266 crore for FY2017-18, of which Tk 1,53,331 crore is earmarked for Annual Development Programme (ADP).

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