• How “facts” influenced Covid policy

    At the beginning of this year, policymakers in many countries, including the US and the EU, decided to lock down the entire country in order to save lives and to push back Covid-19.

  • The curious disconnect between reality and the world of politics

    The national budget announced by the Bangladesh government is another example of the curious disconnect between reality and the world of politics.

  • Will foreign investors relocate to Bangladesh from China?

    With the Bangladesh economy in the first phase of its Covid Reopening, the country will be eagerly looking forward to attracting foreign investors to provide a much-needed stimulus.

  • How to execute a three-phase reopening of the economy

    Every country, small or large, rich or poor, have embraced the concept of a balanced and phased reopening where the concerns of the workers, businesses, and health sector professionals are meshed into a workable action plan.

  • Sustainable Development Goals: What to salvage from Covid-19

    Once the Covid-19 pandemic is under control, and the world economy is back on its tracks, the status and fate of the 2030 Agenda, also known as Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), needs to be reassessed.

  • How to flatten the recession curve and finance Bangladesh’s economic recovery

    Economic recovery following the coronavirus lockdown will require massive government intervention and tons of money.

  • Saadat Husain: A friend, mentor, and unassuming hero

    Dr Saadat Husain, former chairman of Bangladesh Public Service Commission, passed away on April 22, 2020.

  • Vulnerable groups must not bear the brunt of the coronavirus crisis

    The pandemic and its economic impact will be felt very strongly by the poor.

  • Covid-19 and economic recovery

    The Great Depression of the 1930s left its mark on every society and changed the way we think about life.

  • Tough times ahead in the wake of coronavirus

    "Corona-virus can’t tame Bangladesh’s growth momentum”, declared a report issued by the Ministry of Finance of the country. Strong domestic demand fuelled by growth in the flow of remittance and increased public expenditure will counter any possible external shocks, according to the report, which was sent to the Prime Minister’s Office. In other words, the Prime Minister will receive a very rosy picture for the rest of the year, so far as the domestic economy is concerned.

  • Economics and its love-hate relationship with corruption

    Abhijit Banerjee, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics in 2019, made his mark with some early work on corruption in government.

  • UGC must act to stop any new dissertation scandals

    A recent news item caught my attention— “High Court directs the University Grants Commission (UGC) to submit a report on PhD approval process”.

  • In a migrant’s story, facts are truer than fiction

    Jeanine Cummins, the author of the latest American best-seller novel “American Dirt”, is taking a lot of flak for her story based on the experience of a Mexican woman named Lydia and her eight-year-old son who flee their home and cross over to the USA.

  • The role of spreadsheets in Brexit

    As the UK prepares to leave the European Union on January 31, there are two important issues still unresolved: the monetary cost of Brexit, and the future of UK’s trade relations with the EU.

  • Bangladesh in 2020: Where are we now after 25 years?

    It was the winter of 1995, or maybe 1996. Let me only say that it was a memorable moment for me, a quarter of a century ago in the city of Dhaka.

  • Is Trump choking off free trade and decimating WTO?

    Two recent trade pacts—one between the US and China, and the other among US, Mexico and Canada—have given the economists plenty of reasons to worry.

  • Boris Johnson’s victory: What it means for the British economy

    The outcome of Britain’s recent parliamentary elections should not come as a surprise to anyone. The British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the Conservative Party had sought a clear mandate from the people to “get Brexit done”.

  • What to expect on the world stage in 2020

    Americans celebrate Thanks-giving Day (on the last Thursday of November) for many reasons but personally, I look forward to this holiday for the opportunity to reflect on the happenings of the past year, and to plan for the next one.

  • The mounting pressure on Myanmar and its sum total effect

    Last week, for the first time I heard an eminent Burmese citizen and a former advisor to the military government admit that massacre and atrocities were committed against the Rohingyas. He also acknowledged that Rohingya villages were burned in Rakhine.

  • On the road to prosperity

    Bangladesh has made phenomenal progress in the last two decades in terms of improving the standard of living of the masses.

  • The quest for a better life

    Thirty-nine migrants seeking a better life perished in a refrigerated van, and their bodies were found in an industrial site about 25 miles east of central London.

  • Making the SDG goals a reality

    Bangla-desh has expressed its interest to participate in next year’s SDG voluntary national review (VNR) which will be placed before the UN in July 2020.

  • The battle against privation

    The 2019 Nobel Prize in Economics was awarded to a trio who came from three different continents to teach and work together in Cambridge, USA. Abhijit Banerjee hails from India, Esther Duflo grew up in France, and Michael Kremer was born and brought up in the USA and finished his undergraduate and graduate degrees at Harvard. Their research focuses on poverty alleviation, and more specifically on the design of policy to guide development practitioners and government.

  • Why a no-deal Brexit may spell disaster for Britain

    In Ian McEwan’s “Sweet Tooth”, a novel based on the social life of London in the early 1970s, we see a vivid description of conditions that prevailed in the UK which was then facing several crises on different fronts, and was completely torn apart by industrial and social unrest with slowing economic growth and rising unemployment.

  • Is poverty a dirty word?

    In most countries in the world, barring a few, poverty appears to be a dirty word. Even in rich countries such as the USA and UK, it is difficult to find any reliable statistics on the existence of poverty, the level of poverty, or a headcount of poor people. It has recently

  • How to boost FDI

    At some of the conferences on Bangladesh held in the USA, particularly at Harvard University, I have noticed that introductory speeches often mention Henry Kissinger and his infamous remark about Bangladesh being a “basket case” or “bottomless basket”.

  • Brexit: How will Boris Johnson play this game of strategy?

    I am sometimes asked by my family members and confused friends to explain Brexit and the drama that is unfolding every day in the United Kingdom.

  • World leaders fiddle as global economy (and Amazon) burns

    Leaders of the Group of Seven (G7), comprising the world’s largest economies, met for three days in Biarritz, France on August 24-26 but failed to address any of the important global issues including climate change, trade war(s), the looming economic slowdown, etc.

  • Repatriation of Rohingyas: Evidence of Myanmar’s lack of preparedness

    The Rohingya repatriation is now rumoured to start in a few days, on August 22 to be specific. “Repatriation [of Rohingyas] is always on the table.

  • An economist’s campaign against age-obsessed billionaires

    It is well-known that once you become rich, you can stay rich with little effort. Some of the super-rich in today’s world, for example, Microsoft’s Bill Gates, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, and Jack Ma of Alibaba have accumulated an enormous amount of wealth already and are likely to get richer in future. In the parlance of business, the super-rich or billionaires are on a path to exponentially increase their “net worth”.