Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Monday said global adaptation actions over climate change are still far from the pace of devastation just for lack of funds and political will.
"Bangladesh is often referred to as the ground zero for climate change adverse impacts. Adapting to the damage already done is as important as the process of reducing future losses and damages. But global adaptation actions are far from keeping pace with the scale of devastation due to the lack of finance and political will," she said.
The Prime Minister said this while addressing the two-day Climate Adaptation Summit 2021 through a video message. Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte presided over the event.
Sheikh Hasina said the recent experiences of Covid-19 have demonstrated the importance of being united and taking timely action.
She said Bangladesh has emerged as a global leader on locally-led adaptation measures and it developed the Bangladesh Delta Plan-2100 with support from the Netherlands.
To celebrate the birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, Hasina said the government has planted 11.5 million saplings and launched a programme called “Mujib Climate Prosperity Plan”.
She said the draft National Adaptation Plan will be the main policy document for UNFCCC process assisted by the Forest Investment Plan.
"We’ve taken 789 projects for 443 million dollars from our own Climate Change Trust Fund based on locally-led measures," the Prime Minister said.
As the President of Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF) and the host to the South Asian office of Global Centre on Adaptation, Bangladesh is promoting locally led adaptation that can bring forth tangible solution for the vulnerable communities in different countries of the world, she said.
The online international Climate Adaptation Summit (CAS) 2021 on 25 and 26 January, hosted by the Netherlands, convenes global leaders and local stakeholders.
It would see the launch of a comprehensive Adaptation Action Agenda that sets out clear commitments to deliver concrete new endeavours and partnerships to make the world more resilient to the effects of climate change.
The president of Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) Sheikh Fazle Fahim on Monday expressed his gratitude to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on behalf of the private sector for providing houses to homeless families.
“We express sincere gratitude to honourable Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for distributing 66,189 plots of land among destitute, homeless families all over Bangladesh as well as rehabilitating 3,715 families in the barracks on the occasion of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s centennial birth anniversary and the golden jubilee of independence,” he said in a statement.
Fahim said such a feat of ensuring safe housing and better living standards for underprivileged families is unique among the many humanitarian initiatives of the Prime Minister. Such initiatives are seldom heard of around the world.
Also read: Helping the homeless; PM shows how to do it
The FBCCI president has called upon individuals and private sector entrepreneurs to come forward and participate in such humanitarian initiatives. Additionally, FBCCI thanked the government for taking various steps to ensure social security.
No one will be allowed to receive Covid-19 vaccine doses without online registration, says the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS).
“Now we won’t go for inoculation beyond this app (online application). We won’t allow anyone without online registration,” said DGHS DG Abul Bashar Mohammed Khurshid Alam at a press briefing over Covid-19 vaccination at the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).
Explaining the reasons behind the online registration, he said the government will preserve and compile the data of vaccine recipients for using that for analyses.
Khurshid Alam also said they encourage the vaccine recipients to get both doses of Covid-19 vaccine from the same vaccination centre.
If the option is kept open to receive the first dose and the second one from two separate centres, there is a possibly of waste of some doses, he said.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will open the Covid-19 vaccination programme on January 27 next.
The vaccination programme will first start at five centres in the capital. Some 100 people will be vaccinated at each centre on January 28 and 29. The inoculation will then start across the country in the first week of February.
State Minister for ICT Zunaid Ahmed Palak said a team of ICT Division developed the Covid-19 Vaccine Management System ‘Surokkha’ software with support from PMO’s a2i programme, Bangladesh Computer Council and the DGHS.
“We’re handing over the Surokkha software to the DGHS today,” he said.
To get registered for vaccination, one will have to do that though www.surokkha.gov.bd, said the state minister.
About the registration process, he said one will have to provide one’s NID number, date of birth, mobile number, and information of comorbidities, profession and engagement in the Covid-19 activities in the online registration form.
The registration will have to be completed with a one-time-password (OTP) to be texted to mobile phone.
After the registration, the person concerned will have to collect the vaccination card from the portal. The date and the centre for vaccination will be texted to the mobile number of the registered person.
Upon receiving the two shots, the person will be able to download a vaccination certificate from the portal.
Joining the briefing virtually, PM’s Principal Secretary Dr Ahmad Kaikaus said the vaccine has been procured at the lowest price compared to any market outside India.
If any problem arises with the online registration software, he suggested the team concerned to stay ready to modify it for making it a user-friendly one.
Additional Director General of DGHS Meerjady Sabrina Flora said pregnant women, children and those who have Covid-19 positive will not be given the vaccine. There is no enough information over the vaccine impacts on pregnant women and children, she added.
ICT Senior Secretary NM Zeaul Alam and Health Services Secretary Abdul Mannan and PMO Secretary Tofazzel Hossain Miah were present.
Tentative signs of recovery are emerging in global labour markets, following unprecedented disruption in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, says the latest report from the International Labour Organization (ILO) on Monday.
New annual estimates in the seventh edition of the ILO Monitor: COVID-19 and the world of work confirm the massive impact that labour markets suffered in 2020.
The latest figures show that 8.8 per cent of global working hours were lost for the whole of last year (relative to the fourth quarter of 2019), equivalent to 255 million full-time jobs.
This is approximately four times greater than the number lost during the 2009 global financial crisis.
These lost working hours are accounted for either by reduced working hours for those in employment or “unprecedented” levels of employment loss, hitting 114 million people.
Significantly, 71 per cent of these employment losses (81 million people) came in the form of inactivity, rather than unemployment, meaning that people left the labour market because they were unable to work, perhaps because of pandemic restrictions, or simply ceased to look for work.
Looking at unemployment alone drastically understates the impact of COVID-19 on the labour market.
These massive losses resulted in an 8.3 per cent decline in global labour income (before support measures are included), equivalent to US$3.7 trillion or 4.4 per cent of global Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Impact by Groups, Sectors
Women have been more affected than men by the pandemic’s labour market disruptions.
Globally, employment losses for women stand at 5 per cent, versus 3.9 per cent for men. In particular, women were much more likely than men to drop out of the labour market and become inactive.
Younger workers have also been particularly hard hit, losing jobs, dropping out of the labour force or delaying entry into it. The employment loss among youth (15-24 years old) stood at 8.7 per cent, compared to 3.7 per cent for adults. This “highlights the all too real risk of a lost generation”, the Monitor says.
The report shows the uneven impact on different economic, geographic, and labour market sectors.
It highlights concerns of a “K-shaped recovery”, whereby those sectors and workers hit hardest could be left behind in the recovery, leading to increasing inequality, unless corrective measures are taken.
The worst affected sector has been accommodation and food services, where employment declined by more than 20 per cent, on average, followed by retail and manufacturing.
In contrast, employment in information and communication, and finance and insurance, increased in the second and third quarters of 2020. Marginal increases were also seen in mining, quarrying and utilities.
While there is still a high degree of uncertainty, the latest projections for 2021 show that most countries will experience a relatively strong recovery in the second half of the year, as vaccination programmes take effect.
The Monitor puts forward three scenarios for recovery; baseline, pessimistic and optimistic.
The baseline scenario (which draws on International Monetary Fund forecasts from October 2020), projects a 3 per cent loss of working hours globally in 2021 (compared to Q4 2019), equivalent to 90 million full time jobs.
The pessimistic scenario, which assumes slow progress on vaccination in particular, would see working hours drop by 4.6 per cent, while the optimistic scenario forecasts a 1.3 per cent decline.
This would depend on the pandemic being under control and an upsurge of consumer and business confidence.
In all scenarios the Americas, Europe and Central Asia, would experience around twice the working hour losses of other regions.
Recommendations for Recovery
Macroeconomic policies to remain accommodative in 2021 and beyond, including fiscal stimulus where possible, and measures to support incomes and promote investment.
Targeted measures to reach women, young people, low-skilled and low paid workers, and other hard-hit groups.
International support for low and middle-income countries - which have fewer financial resources to roll out vaccines and promote economic and employment recovery.
Focusing support on the hardest-hit sectors while creating jobs in fast-growing ones.
Social dialogue to implement the recovery strategies necessary to create more inclusive, fair, sustainable economies.
“The signs of recovery we see are encouraging, but they are fragile and highly uncertain, and we must remember that no country or group can recover alone,” said ILO Director-General Guy Ryder.
“We are at a fork in the road. One path leads to an uneven, unsustainable, recovery with growing inequality and instability, and the prospect of more crises. The other focuses on a human-centred recovery for building back better, prioritizing employment, income and social protection, workers’ rights and social dialogue. If we want a lasting, sustainable and inclusive recovery, this is the path policy-makers must commit to.”
Eighteen more people died of Covid-19 in Bangladesh and another 602 got infected by the deadly virus in the past 24 hours till Monday morning.
The death toll from the pandemic rose to 8,041 while the total caseload reached 5,32,401, said the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) in a handout.
So far, 3,570,387 samples have been tested, including 14,810 in the past 24 hours.
The DGHS handout said the daily detection rate was 4.06 percent while the overall rate is 14.91 percent.
Until this morning, 476,979 patients (89.59 percent) have recovered. “The mortality rate is now 1.51 percent,” the DGHS said.
Bangladesh reported its first Coronavirus cases on March 8 and the first death on March 18.
Global Covid condition
More than 99 million people have got infected with Covid-19 across the world, according to Johns Hopkins University (JHU).
The total case count reached 99,177,542 with 2,129,134 fatalities as of Monday morning, said the data.
The US – the world’s worst-hit country – crossed the grim milestone of 20 million cases on New Year’s Day.
The country’s infection tally reached 25,124,064 and fatalities stood at 419,204 on early Monday.
Brazil registered 592 deaths from Covid-19 in the past 24 hours, bringing the national death toll to 217,037 - the second-highest death toll in the world, the country's Ministry of Health said Sunday.
Another 28,323 covid-19 cases were reported over the last day, taking the national caseload to 8,844,577, the ministry said.
Sao Paulo, the most populous state in the country, is the hardest hit, with 1,699,427 cases and 51,502 deaths.
Brazil's outbreak is the third largest in the world, after the United States and India. The country is experiencing a second wave of Covid-19, with cases and deaths on the rise since December.
India’s total tally reached 10,654,533 while the country’s death toll mounted to 153,339 on Monday.
The United Kingdom has been another raging hotspot for the pandemic over the winter, and the country now stands poised to become the first country in Europe, and only the fifth overall (after the USA, Brazil, India and Mexico), to reach 100,000 fatalities - despite a population (66 million) that is almost half that of the smallest among the other four (Mexico with a population of 127 million).
As of Monday, the UK has recorded a caseload of 3.62 million, and 97, 329 deaths from Covid-19.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is scheduled to launch coronavirus vaccination drive at Kurmitola General Hospital in the capital on January 27.
She will inaugurate the vaccination programme virtually, said Abdul Mannan, Secretary of Health Service Division of the Health Ministry on Saturday.
The primary vaccine campaign will begin by vaccinating a nurse at the hospital, he said.
Bangladesh receives vaccine
The first consignment containing five million doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine purchased by Bangladesh from licensed manufacturers Serum Institute of India under the brand name Covishield reached Dhaka on Monday.
Earlier on Thursday, Bangladesh received two million doses of Covid-19 vaccine gifted by India.