Why the artificial conflict of life and livelihood? by Moshahida Sultana (translated from Bangla original in Prothom Alo) Corona test costs about Tk 5,000 sitting at home privately. And the cost of one month as government financial assistance has been … Continue reading Why the artificial conflict of life and livelihood?
Khurram Husain [Dawn (Pakistan)] says economist Mushfiq Mobarak and Zachary Barnett-Howell, in their paper “Poor Countries need to think twice” are valuing #Pakistani lives less than American lives because their paper uses VSL. Hussain states: “It begins by asking whether “shuttering … Continue reading Social Distancing in Poor Countries: A Debate
Brands Must Behave Fairly Syed Nasim Manzoor The second leading sector of Bangladesh’s exports is leather, footwear and leather goods. The largest markets for these products are Germany, Italy, France, Western Europe, USA and Japan. But under the influence of … Continue reading Nasim Manzoor: Western Brands Must Behave Fairly
by Firoz Ahmed, translated from Bengali
Bangladesh has not seen this type of ferocious attack and killing of innocent people before. We express our deepest sympathy to the families of the victims, although no amount of consolation can soothe them. Our thoughts are also for the injured and terrified. Everyone in the country is feeling the anxiety and uncertainty. Continue reading “Holding the Economy to Ransom”
by Farida Khan for AlalODulal.org
The Tazreen fire and Rana Plaza collapse has made many Western consumers shudder at the thought of their complicity with sub-human conditions in the Third World factories where their clothes are sewn. While consumers are often careful to avoid purchasing soccer balls sewn by child labor Continue reading “Reflections on “Unprecedented Changes” in the Garments Sector of Bangladesh”
The Measurement Problem
In 2010, the world reached its target for Millennium Development Goal 1 (MDG 1) five years ahead of schedule. Continue reading “Battling Extreme Poverty in Bangladesh”
আরেকটি সর্বনাশা চুক্তি
আনু মুহাম্মদ for Alal O Dulal
দেশের ভবিষ্যৎকে বিপদাপন্ন করে আরেকটি সর্বনাশা চুক্তি করলো সরকার। যুক্তরাষ্ট্র, ভারত, চীন খুশি, কিন্তু বিপদাপন্ন বাংলাদেশ। গত ১৭ ফেব্রুয়ারি সংশোধিত ‘পিএসসি ২০১২’ অনুযায়ি সরকার ভারতের অয়েল এ্যান্ড ন্যাচারাল গ্যাস কর্পোরেশন (ওএনজিসি বিদেশ) এবং অয়েল ইন্ডিয়ার সাথে বঙ্গোপসাগরের এস এস ৪ ও এসএস ৯ নামে চিহ্নিত ২টি গ্যাসব্লকের চুক্তি সম্পাদন করেছে। Continue reading “আনু মুহাম্মদ: আরেকটি সর্বনাশা চুক্তি”
In his latest economic post for Alal O Dulal, Jyoti Rahman argues that compared to its neighbours Bangladesh has done considerably well across a number of indicators. Continue reading “Missing the mark about feeling good”
Gold Rush Bangladesh!
The year was, I think, 2006. I was working for development of the furniture sector in Bangladesh, when I became friends with leading furniture manufacturers of the country. Continue reading “Rubaiyath Sarwar: Gold Rush – Bangladesh”
by Abdullah Shibli for AlaloDulal.org
Bangladesh, the country and its economy, is full of contradictions. To list a couple, while it is one of the world’s fastest growing nations, it has pockets of extreme poverty and malnutrition in urban and rural areas. Another paradox: for the last two decades it has been ruled by two political parties, the Awami League and the Bangladesh Nationalist Party, led by two head-strong leaders, who never can seem to agree on anything, but ran the gauntlet and survived many potentially dangerous threats, including religious fundamentalism, military takeovers, and internal revolt, to its fledgling democracy. Continue reading “The state of the Bangladesh economy”
Decoding The Bangladesh Paradox — A Research Agenda
by Jyoti Rahman for Alal O Dulal
Bangladesh is getting quite an attention from the world. But unlike the seventies and eighties, not for the catastrophes – natural or man-made – alone. Continue reading “Decoding the Bangladesh Paradox — A Research Agenda”
By Nadine S Murshid and Awrup Sanyal for AlalODulal.org
“Economic growth cannot sensibly be treated as an end in itself. Development has to be more concerned with enhancing lives we lead and the freedoms we enjoy,” posits Amartya Sen in his book Development as Freedom (1999). Yet, Bangladesh has grown – developed at a decent rate of 6.7% over the last year – without enhancing the lives of workers, without the freedoms that Sen would like workers to enjoy, as exemplified, perhaps, by the recurrent protests by garment factory workers in Dhaka, protests that have a history of turning violent.
India sneezes, will we catch the cold?
By Jyoti Rahman for AlaloDulal.org
Just a year or so ago, the Indian economy was expected to be growing at a 8-9% pace, and people were talking about double digit growth into the 2020s. Within a year, growth has slowed to 4.4%, without there being any major shock —no financial crisis, no balance of payments crisis, no major natural disaster, nor any particular political tension. India just slowed, sharply. It’s now expected to grow only at around 4-5% a year, at least in the near term. Reflecting the slowdown, and the changed perception of India, the Indian rupee has taken a beating in recent weeks.
Making Dhaka Livable
by Humayun Kabir for AlalODulal.org
Dhaka has been once again deemed by the Economist as the second least livable city in the world. Damascus came in last only because of the civil war that is tearing the city apart. If the civil war were to stop today, Damascus would become imminently more livable than Dhaka tomorrow. Regardless of our opinion of the Economist or its survey, I don’t think any of us would disagree that living conditions of Dhaka are horrid and are in dire need of improvement. In this article I will try to suggest a few ways to improve Dhaka’s livability. However, before doing so let me say a few words in defense of Dhaka and about the dangers of drawing up schemes for improvement. Continue reading “Making Dhaka Livable”
The Road to Court 21
by Seema Amin for AlalODulal.org
“O bleating without wool! O Wound!” Lorca
Prologue: the incidental messenger
‘Now you say the income of the Adamjis, Dauds and Isphanis have increased by 40 % and the income of the s have decreased by 5 %, then you make an average and you get Per Capita Income and you say Honey and Money and Milk is Flowing in the Economy. What happens to Coliuddin, Soliuddin and Rohiuddin?‘ Continue reading “The Road to Court 21”
“Cutting hills, building brick kilns or shrimp hatcheries by destroying agricultural land, and high rises by filling in water bodies, setting up business by filling up rivers, making furniture at the cost of forests and hills as well as the commodification of education and medical services, and the price hike of electricity and gas can all point to an increase in the growth of the GDP.” – Anu Muhammad
Is there ‘good’ and ‘bad’ corruption ?
by Farhad Mahmud for AlalODulal.org
Corruption is an important issue and throws up some interesting problems and dilemmas.
“’Second Home’: The Sahibs of Begam Para and the Turtles that Sell the Country”
by Faruk Wasif for Prothom Alo, translated for AlalODulal.org by Nusrat Chowdhury [please do not reproduce w/o permission]
If one asked which animal carries its own home on its back, the answers would be, 1. a turtle; 2. a Chinese farmer; and, 3. a few thousand wealthy Bangladeshis. Continue reading “Faruk Wasif: The Sahibs of Begum Para and the turtles that sell the country”
Nearly every rich country has gone through a “T-shirt phase” — an economic period in which there are a significant number of poor farmers who, rather than toil on unproductive land, accept harsh work conditions and low wages in textile and apparel factories. Continue reading “Adam Davidson: Economic Recovery, Made in Bangladesh?”
Captalism Exposed, Savar Tragedy Part 1 (Politics-Administration-Media evil nexus)
by Zia Hassan, Translated from Bengali by Adnan R Amin for AlalODulal.Org
The reason capitalism succeeds worldwide is because it promotes human greed. It sees greed as an essential force and accepts it as internal and core. Continue reading “Capitalism Exposed, Part 1: Politics-Administration-Media evil nexus”
To BGMEA: How To Maintain Bangladesh’s Shining Image Abroad in Five Easy Steps
Guest Post by Shabnam Nadiya
1. Stop thinking that ‘compliance’ is a word to keep international buyers happy and begin to understand that it has to do with the safety of people. People like you and me. People whose labor creates that shining Bangladesh in the first place. People whose actual labor builds your fortunes. Continue reading “Shabnam Nadiya: To BGMEA, How To Maintain Bangladesh’s Shining Image Abroad in Five Easy Steps”
Who Will Bell the Cat?
Guest Post by Fariha Sarawat
Much has been said about who’s to blame for the story state of garments workers’ rights, safety and working conditions in Bangladesh.
Some people, including some local manufacturers, would like us to buy in to the narrative of exploitative buyers whose predatory negotiations force our manufacturers to cut costs (because they are afraid they would lose the order otherwise to China or others) in order to stay competitive and that leaves the latter with little (once costs of inputs, overheads etc have been deducted) to pay to the workers. Continue reading “Fariha Sarawat: Buyers are also culpable”
Made in Bangladesh: The Terror of Capitalism
by VIJAY PRASHAD
“In the Atlantic world, meanwhile, self-absorption over the wars on terror and on the downturn in the economy prevent any genuine introspection over the mode of life that relies upon debt-fueled consumerism at the expense of workers in Dhaka. Those who died in the Rana building are victims not only of the malfeasance of the sub-contractors, but also of twenty-first century globalisation.”
While Our Eyes Are Elsewhere
by Anu Muhammad, Translated by Tibra Ali for AlalODulal.org
Despite putting people from all walks of life at risk, the recent violence and uncertainty in our country seem to have inconvenienced the local and foreign plunderers and invaders very little. On the contrary, in many instances because of the shifted attention it has even helped them. For many this time of uncertainty has been a blessing!
বাবা কেন চাকর, অনন্ত কেন রিকশাওয়ালা ? আমাদের ক্লাস স্ট্যাটাস নিয়ে একটি বিষদ ক্যাচাল
For almost two years I was thinking of writing about our class distribution. But I could not find time to write it. But recently when even a proper “bourgeois” like Ananta Jalil got slanged as “rickshawalla class” I thought the time had come to write the piece.
In the decade since 2002, the value of leather exports in Bangladesh has grown by an average of $41 million per year. From June 2011 to July 2012 Bangladesh exported around $663 million of leather and leather goods, including footwear. This leather is exported to some 70 countries throughout the world, but principally China, South Korea, Japan, Italy, Germany, Spain, and the United States.
Continue reading “Human Rights Watch: Toxic Tanneries”
Dhaka is ranked least liveable among 140 surveyed cities. Economist Intelligence Unit’s Global Livability Survey ranked Dhaka 139 in 2011, and 140 in 2012.
DOWNLOAD: EIU Liveability Report 2012
Least livable cities: 2012
131. Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire
132. Tehran, Iran
133. Douala, Cameroon
134. Tripoli, Libya
135. Karachi, Pakistan
136. Algiers, Algeria
137. Harare, Zimbabwe
138. Lagos, Nigeria
139. Port Moresby, Papua New Guineau
140. Dhaka, Bangladesh
Least livable cities: 2011
131. Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire
132. Tehran, Iran
133. Douala, Cameroon
134. Karachi, Pakistan
135. Tripoli, Libya
136. Algiers, Algeria
137. Lagos, Nigeria
138. Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea
139. Dhaka, Bangladesh
140. Harare, Zimbabwe
Continue reading “Dhaka moves to #1 in Least Liveable City Index”