Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said although the Covid-19 pandemic slowed down the economic progress of the country to some extent, the nation would move forward fighting all obstacles.
The PM was addressing a meeting of the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council through videoconferencing from the Gono Bhaban.
Hasina said the ongoing crisis might delay the country's graduation to a developing country from a least developed one within the stipulated time.
She urged all to abide by the health guidelines so that people do not suffer.
Briefing reporters after the meeting, held at the National Economic Council in the city's Sher-e-Bangla Nagar, Planning Minister MA Mannan said an American think tank has highly praised the PM and included her in the list of eight successful women heads of state and government in the world for her sincere efforts to contain the novel coronavirus in Bangladesh.
He said the PM used her common sense as she is a daughter of this land. That's why she knew how to handle the situation, the minister added.
She has a comprehensive idea of the culture of this territory and that's why it was easy for her to tackle the situation, Mannan told reporters.
The PM has also taken strong initiatives to fight the impacts of Cyclone Amphan, he said.
"Due to her outstanding directives on managing the crisis of Cyclone Amphan, Bangladesh did not face any major loss of lives and properties."
On May 23, UN Secretary-General António Guterres praised Hasina for her hard work ahead of Cyclone Amphan.
The government had evacuated around two million people from the country's coastal areas before the storm made landfall on May 20. More than 12,000 cyclone shelters were set up with measure for preventing Covid-19 spread.
For this reason, the meeting congratulated the premier, the planning minister said.
Speaking at the meeting, Hasina directed the authorities concerned to monitor and implement the projects on Covid-19 rapidly.
She directed them to set up ICUs at 64 district hospitals to provide quality healthcare services to patients under the Covid-19-related projects.
The PM also asked them to ensure high pressure oxygen service in those hospitals to address the lack of treatment options for Covid-19 patients.
Hasina urged the local administrations concerned to help farmers market their fruit crops.
Mentioning that shrimp hatcheries were damaging embankments in the country's coastal areas, she directed the authorities to undertake a joint initiative to protect the embankments during natural disasters.