Bangladesh Priorities
Home Menu

Bangladesh Priorities: Impact Highlights

Bjorn Lomborg meets with Bangladesh's Prime Minister

Dr. Bjorn Lomborg, President of Copenhagen Consensus Center, met with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina of Bangladesh in December 2016, while both were attending the SDGs conference in Dhaka.

The event, “Delivering Sustainable Development Goals in Bangladesh: Concepts, Processes and Challenges” was organized by the Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI). Dr. Lomborg updated the Prime Minister of Bangladesh on the Copenhagen Consensus Center’s Bangladesh Priorities project and its role in helping Bangladesh achieve its Vision 2021 goals. He presented the Prime Minister with an advance copy of the Bangladesh Priorities research, and they discussed the ongoing collaboration between the Copenhagen Consensus Center and the Prime Minister’s Access to Information (a2i) unit.

2-year MoU with the government’s think-tank at the Prime Minister’s Office

Nobel Night: Opening of Bangladesh Priorities

MoU signing between Access to Information (A2I) of PMO and Copenhagen Consensus Center on 08 May, 2016. The Finance Minister is looking at the exchange of agreements.

Daily Ittefaq

Under the MoU, A2I and Copenhagen Consensus Center will work together in highlighting the smart solutions and the use of cost-benefit analysis across line ministries.” 

From right: Dr. Bjorn Lomborg, President of Copenhagen Consensus Center, is speaking at the Nobel Night: Opening of Bangladesh Priorities event organized on 08 May, 2016. Other members in the podium include (from right): Anir Chowdhury, Policy Advisor, Access to Information (A2I), Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), AbulKalam Azad, Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister, PMO, Dr. Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury, BirBakram, Energy Adviser to the Prime Minister,Professor Finn Kydland, Nobel Laureate Economist, AMA Muhith, Minister, Ministry of Finance, ShahriarAlam, State Minister, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Kabir Bin Anwar, Director General, PMO and Project Director, A2I.

Finance Minister promises to do digitization within 6 months which you can watch at  Ekushey TV.

Many are resisting digitization of land records management but I am going to do this before the end of next fiscal year,” -  Finance Minister, Abul Maal Abdul Muhith. 

Prothom Alo

The Chief Guest of the Nobel Night event, Finance Minister, Abul Maal Abdul Muhith appreciated the Bangladesh Priorities project’s evaluation of different Digital solutions.

Bjorn’s pre-Budget FY2016-17 meeting with the Finance Minister of Bangladesh 

Mr. Nojibur Rahman, Chairman of NBR and Sr. Secretary, Internal Resources Division under the Ministry of Finance, shared a photo of the Finance Minister going through the Outcome Document and final rankings of Bangladesh Priorities with Dr. Bjorn Lomborg. From left: Finance Minister of Bangladesh, AMA Muhith, Bjorn Lomborg, President of Copenhagen Consensus Center, Roland Mathiasson, Executive Vice President, Copenhagen Consensus Center, Nojibour Rahman and Hasanuzzaman Zaman, Outreach Manager, Copenhagen Consensus Center.

Closing event of Bangladesh Priorities at BRAC Centre Inn

From left – Dr. Bjorn Lomborg, President of Copenhagen Consensus Center, Nobel Laureate economist Professor Finn Kydland, Economic Advisor to the Prime Minister of Bangladesh Dr. Mashiur Rahman, Executive Director of BRAC Dr. Muhammad Musa, and, Professor Abdul Bayes, Director, BRAC Research and Evaluation Division (RED)

Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha: “Investment in three areas can avoid 1 out of every 11 deaths: Dr. Mashiur Rahman, Economic Advisor to the Prime Minister.”

Dr. Mashiur Rahman, Economic Advisor to the Prime Minister said,

‘Investment in TB treatment, child nutrition, and e-government can help to save 1 person out of every 11 from death. Millions of takas will also be saved. Because child nutrition is related to the future generation and their intellectual development, it should be the priority.’”

BDNEWS24: The chief guest of the event, Economic Advisor to the Prime Minister, Dr. Mashiur Rahman said,

it is important to incorporate the priorities into existing and new policies.”

Policy Seminar: Nutrition Priorities

Analysis from Bangladesh priorities helped focus the Second National Plan of Action for Nutrition on the best ways forward. This input means that each taka or dollar spent in nutrition will provide much more benefits for Bangladesh’s most deprived population - Dr. Rudaba Khondker, Country Director of Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) in Bangladesh

From left – Professor Abdul Bayes, Director, BRAC-RED and Team Leader of BRAC-LANSA (Leveraging Agriculture for Nutrition in South Asia), Health and Family Welfare Secretary Syed Monjurul Islam and the Director General of Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) Professor Dr Deen M Nurul Huq

The policy seminar was attended, among others, by Health and Family Welfare Minister Mohammed Nasim and also the Focal Point for the then Nutrition Plan of Action (NPAN). A policy proposal containing six priorities was submitted to the Health Minister, the Health Secretary, Director General of Directorate General of Health and Services (DGHS). These are expected to be included in the NPAN for the next decade.

Policy Seminar: Education Priorities 

Bangladesh will prioritize psycho-stimulation activities for children and increasing secondary education for girls - Advocate Mostafizur Rahman, Minister, Ministry of Primary and Mass Education

The education policy seminar can be a great input to various policies and acts. I hope the interventions discussed will be taken by the government and we will consider it for implementation - Edouard Beigbeder, Representative of UNICEF

Fromt left – Dr. Mahfuzar Rahman, Director of BRAC Research and Evaluation Division (RED), Chowdhury Mufad Ahmed, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Education, Dr. Safiqul Islam, Director of the BRAC Education Programme (BEP), Advocate Mostafizur Rahman, Minister, Ministry of Primary and Mass Education, Edouard Beigbeder, Representative of UNICEF, and, Hasanuzzaman Zaman, Outreach Manager of Copenhagen Consensus Center. Professor SM Hafizur Rahman from the Institute of Education and Research (IER), Dhaka University is presenting his keynote paper

The policy seminar on education received wide media coverage including the two largest newspapers in Bangla and English Prothom Alo and Daily Star, and the largest online news outlet BDNEWS24.  

Policy Seminar: Smart 7th Five Year Plan Interventions 

Bangladesh Priorities research is in the same wave length as the 7th Five Year Plan - Dr. Shamsul Alam, Senior Secretary of Planning Commission and the key architect of the 7th Five Year Plan (7FYP)

The Financial Express published a report covering the event, alongside other news media outlets. One of top private TV media channels interviewed Hasanuzzaman Zaman, Outreach Manager of Copenhagen Consensus Center.  

From left – Hasanuzzaman Zaman, Outreach Manager, Copenhagen Consensus Center, Additional Secretary of the Finance Division Mohammad Muslim Chowdhury, Policy Advisor of the Access to Information (A2I) project of the Prime Minister Office (PMO) Anir Chowdhury, Dr. Sultan Hafeez Rahman, Executive Director, BRAC Institute of Governance and Development (BIGD), Member of the Planning Commission (GED) and Senior Secretary, Dr Shamsul Alam, Commissioner of the Anti-corruption Commission (ACC) Dr Nasiruddin Ahmed and Shahariar Sadat, Academic Coordinator, South Asian Institute of Advanced Legal and Human Rights Studies (SAILS)

It was noted in the discussion that Bangladesh has made significant achievements both in economics and political fronts. Nevertheless, more can be done to address some of the RMG industry's most pressing current issues include poor compliance, inadequate infrastructure, all of which hinder overall competitiveness. On the political front, supporting the scale-up of proven good practices in service delivery, land management, procurement and village level governance, can help to move the country closer to Vision 2021, all of which hinder overall well-being of Bangladesh.