Despite external and internal challenges, the World Bank said Bangladesh’s economy remained strong and resilient though it trimmed its growth forecast for the economy at less than 7% in the current 2015-16 fiscal year.
The Bangladeshi government in June last year passed a record 3tn-taka ($37bn) national budget, targeting an economic growth of 7% for the current 2015-16 fiscal year, Xinhua news agency reported yesterday.
However, the World Bank on Saturday expressed its doubt about the government’s 7% beyond provisional growth estimate of Bangladesh’s GDP for the 2015-16 fiscal year.
In its Bangladesh Economic Update for April 2016 the Washington-based lender said, “With modest fiscal expansion and some easing of the infrastructure bottlenecks, GDP growth is projected to rise gradually towards 7%.”
Zahid Hussain, the lead economist at the Dhaka office of the World Bank while addressing a programme on Saturday, said Bangladesh’s GDP growth is very unlikely to reach 7% in this fiscal year.
He said some organisations predict 6.3% GDP growth, some others 6.6% and then again there are forecasts of 6.8% while the government says beyond 7%.
But one thing is sure that all predict over six percent GDP growth, he said and added whatever it may be really, this is going to one of the highest growths across the globe.
“Bangladesh is among the top 12 developing countries with a population of over 20mn, who achieved 6 plus percent growth in 2016,” the Economic Update mentioned.
UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) also suggested Bangladesh to reduce infrastructure and energy shortages, broaden the export base beyond garments and ensure decent work conditions and labour rights.
“The outlook for growth remains optimistic, with growth being projected at 6.8% in 2016 and 7% in 2017,” said the UNESCAP report, titled ‘Economic and Social Survey of Asia and The Pacific 2016’.
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