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Challenges of economic transformation and growth in Bangladesh: agriculture and manufacturing

Time (GMT +00) 09:30 17:30
Dr Debapriya Bhattacharya
- Member, International Advisory Committee, DFID-ESRC Growth Research Programme

Chief Guest
Mr Tofail Ahmed MP - 
Hon’ble Minister for Commerce, Government of Bangladesh

Special Guest

Dr Abdul Moyeen Khan - Former Minister for Science and ICT for Bangladesh

Intorductory remarks
Professor Mustafizur Rahman - Executive Director, CPD, Dhaka

Dr Dirk Willem te Velde - 
Head of Programme, International Economic Development Group, ODI, UK
Dr Christopher M Woodruff - Professor, Department of Economics, University of Warwick, UK
Mr Azam Mohammed - Former Executive Director General and Additional Secretary, Ministry of Commerce, Pakistan
Mr Nikhil Treebhoohun - CEO, Global Finance Mauritius
Dr Ludovico Alcorta - Director, Development Policy, Statistics and Research Branch (DPR), United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO)

Mr Anwar-Ul-Alam Chowdhury Parvez -
Former President, Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA)
Dr Khondaker Golam Moazzem - Additional Research Director, CPD, Dhaka


​Over the last two decades, Bangladesh has created a vibrant manufacturing industry, particularly through its international garment production. However, much of this sector still involves simple assembly tasks, rather than more skill-intensive design, marketing or textile production. The challenge now for Bangladesh is to upgrade to higher value-added activities. The ability to achieve this will depend partly on whether firms engage in innovation and training for their staff, but also on the right incentive framework and public policies led by government. Building on the work of a DFID-ESRC Growth Research Programme project, this workshop will examine how firms and policy-makers can work together to address co-ordination failures and increase productivity in Bangladesh’s manufacturing sector.

Economic transformation applies equally to rural Bangladesh, where two changes will likely be critical to rural incomes. One is the extent to which productivity, especially labour productivity, in farming can be raised. The other is the extent to which rural non-farm economy develops, partly in synergy with agriculture, to create additional jobs — preferably with rising labour productivity. The extent of such rural economic transformation will also be reviewed in this workshop.
Dhaka, Bangladesh