Bangladesh is on the cusp of becoming a middle-income country as its per capita income rose to $1,314 this fiscal year, meeting the World Bank's criteria.
Bangladesh will be recognised as a middle-income nation if it achieves at least an average per capita income of $1,045 for three consecutive years. Per capita income was $1,190 last fiscal year and $1,154 in 2012-13.
According to the World Bank's 2012 classification, the income thresholds are: low income $1,035 or less; lower middle-income $1,036 to $4,085; upper middle-income $4,086 to $12,615; and high income $12,616 or more.
The income thresholds are most often revised upwards to allow for international inflation, according to Zahid Hussain, lead economist of the multilateral lender's Dhaka office.
“We will know in July about the middle-income classification,” Hussain, who is now in the US, said yesterday through an SMS.
Mustafizur Rahman, executive director of the Centre for Policy Dialogue, said this is a provisional figure. “We will know whether we have become a middle-income country once we get the final figure because the World Bank will not confirm the status on the
basis of provisional figure.”
He, however, said Bangladesh might get the lower middle-income status next year.
Bangladesh now aspires to be a middle-income nation by 2021, when the country will celebrate its 50th year of independence.
The rise in per capita income makes Bangladesh the 58th largest economy in the world in terms of nominal value, Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal told reporters while releasing the latest GDP data yesterday.
On the scale of purchasing power parity, the per capita income in the country is $3,019, making the economy the 36th largest in the world, he said.