A more pro-people budget expected

ডেইলি স্টার সম্পাদকীয় প্রকাশিত: ০৫ জুন ২০২১, ০০:০০

Since the pandemic hit Bangladesh in early 2020, the poverty rate has doubled—for every five people in Bangladesh, two are now living below the poverty line. There has been a 49 percent decline in salaried income, with daily wage labourers being hit particularly hard, and households have had to cut back on crucial spending on health, education and other necessities. In the run-up to the recent announcement of the proposed budget for the fiscal year 2021-22, there was hope that the latest budget would aggressively tackle these pandemic-induced inequalities and ensure that the affected are able to get back on their feet.


Although the two new safety net funds—Tk 7,300 crore for the pandemic-affected and Tk 5,000 crore for climate victims—are welcome news, an article in this daily yesterday detailed how the major issue will be with implementation, since the government still has no up-to-date dataset on vulnerable populations. And so far, the government stimulus packages to help the Covid-affected have mainly served the formal sector. If the government has any new plans to support the estimated 1.35 crore informal-sector workers who lost their jobs during last year's shutdown, we are yet to hear of them.

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