Overall Macroeconomic Situation Stable: Planning Minister

Desk Report

Published: 27 Jun 2021, 08:37 pm

Planning Minister MA Mannan || Photo: Collected

Planning Minister MA Mannan || Photo: Collected

Planning Minister MA Mannan has said that the overall macroeconomic situation is largely stable in the country despite the jolts of  COVID-19 pandemic.

He also said that inequality and the trend of general inflation is now less than before.

The Planning Minister said this while addressing a virtual seminar titled “National Budget 2021-2022: Sustainable Development, Lives and Livelihood during COVID-19” as the chief guest held yesterday evening.

Organized by the Bangladesh Agricultural Economists Association (BAEA), former Bangladesh Bank Governor and “Bangabandhu Chair” Professor of Dhaka University Dr Atiur Rahman spoke on the occasion as special guest.

General Economics Division (GED) member of the Planning Commission Dr Shamsul Alam (senior secretary) spoke as the chief discusssant chaired by BAEA President Sajjadul Hassan.

Secretary General of the Association Dr Mohammad Mizanul Haque Kajol gave the address of welcome while Prof Dr Ismat Ara Begum and Dr Mohammad Jahangir Alam of Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh jointly presented the key-note paper.

The virtual seminar was moderated jointly by Md Nahid Sattar and Shakila Salam Shampa, said a press release today.

Terming again this proposed budget as “business friendly”, the Planning Minister said that efforts are on to  decentralize the social safety net operations side by side the budget would be made more people-friendly.

Noting that there is sometimes lack of coordination while conducting researches while the researchers often could not spend the allotted fund for their researches, he said that the government is very much aware in this regard. “Subsidy will continue in agriculture.” He added.

Prof Dr Atiur Rahman said that the budget for the FY22 has been framed targeting 70 percent of the poor community while some eight lakh people would come afresh under the social safety net programmes in 112 sectors.

Praising highly the farsighted leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, he mentioned that the premier has been working relentlessly to materialize the dream of building “Sonar Bangla” as envisioned  by Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

Ruling out the possibility of soaring up the inflation rate due to the budget deficit, Dr Atiur Rahman said that the central bank is capable enough of  dealing  with such situation.

He also highlighted the importance of the agriculture sector towards economic prosperity side by side stressed the need for motivating the young educated youths in agriculture.

“It’s indispensable to launch insurance schemes in animal husbandry, in haor and coastal agriculture.” he added.

Dr Shamsul Alam said that the country is moving ahead in line with the concerned plans as the Five Year Plan envisages the possible budget size of year after year.

Highlighting various aspects of the proposed budget for FY22, he also termed this budget as “business friendly” adding that the private sector contributes around 70-80 percent of the economy.

Terming this decade as an age of reforms, the GED member said necessary reforms are needed for successful implementation of the plans.

He said although the per capita income has increased in recent times, but revenue collection is still not up to the expected level for which the proposed budget has encouraged investment through reducing taxes.

Dr Alam, however, opined that the necessary reforms should have to be brought at the NBR to increase further the tax-GDP ratio.

He informed that the main goal of the 8th Five Year Plan, Sustainable Development Goals and the Vision 2021-2041 is to alleviate poverty further and thus attain the goal of “zero poverty”.

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr Alam said that the inward remittance flow, export earnings, agricultural production have increased over the last two years while the production in the manufacturing sector witnessed a 10th percent growth  .

BAEA President and former Senior Secretary of the Prime Minister’s Office Sajjadul Hassan welcomed the proposed budget for FY22 and noted the contributions of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina towards development of the country.

He informed that in order to address the problem related to marketing of agricultural products, the graduates from the agricultural economics have been included in the agriculture marketing cadre service. “Hopefully this problem will be resolved soon.”

A total of 300 participants including researchers from local and international institutions, Secretaries and other officials of various Ministries and Divisions, vice chancellors of various universities, students, agronomists, and officials from different banks and financial institutions attended the programme.

Source: BSS

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