Bangladesh remains a compelling growth story, despite the global pandemic, said Standard Chartered’s leading economists.
The bank’s global research team was speaking at a media session held following the 2021 Bangladesh session of the Bank’s Global Research Briefing series.
Planning Minister MA Mannan attended the event held recently as the chief guest while around 300 of the Bank’s clients joined via video conferencing, said a media release on Thursday.
Eric Robertsen, Global Head of Research and Chief Strategist, Standard Chartered, said while the pace and distribution of global recovery remains highly uneven, Bangladesh has made a strong comeback with one of the highest GDP growths in the world in 2020.
“A robust vaccination program and implementation of strategic infrastructure projects are expected to further increase momentum towards the nation’s LDC graduation”.
Saurav Anand, Economist, South Asia, Standard Chartered said Bangladesh’s economy is set to accelerate after a speed bump, with GDP growth forecast at 5.5% in FY21 and 7.2% in FY22.
“The momentum will be driven by an export demand recovery, strong remittance inflows and public investment. Policy support is a prerequisite for a smooth transition to middle-income status, with per capita GDP set to reach USD 3,000 by FY26.”
Naser Ezaz Bijoy, Chief Executive Officer, Standard Chartered Bangladesh said the government of Bangladesh has navigated the internal and external challenges of the pandemic remarkably well.
“The resilience of Bangladesh economy gives us cause for optimism. As the vaccination drive continues, the economy is set to accelerate, while lower debt levels compared to its peers provide medium term fiscal runway for growth,” Bijoy said.
He said there are significant opportunities for productivity gains through technology adoption, technology inclusiveness through mobile-based solutions and the ITES sector, while growth-supportive policies focus sectors will continue to spur private investment and FDI.
Minister Mannan said the people of Bangladesh, the government and the business community have once again demonstrated tremendous resilience to ensure that while the shared development journey might have slowed, it has not been halted.
“We remain as committed as ever in fostering a business-friendly climate, so that we can continue on our journey of inclusive progress and prosperity,” he said.