ICSA Bangladesh, a non-profit service organisation, arranged its 20th session titled ‘Economic Challenges in the second wave of Covid-19: Bangladesh perspective’ on May 06, according to a media release.
Professor Md Elias Hossain, department of Economics at University of Rajshahi, moderated the whole session, while Professor Jakir Hossain, Institute of Bangladesh Studies, University of Rajshahi, Professor M Abu Eusuf, University of Dhaka, and Dr Naznin Ahmed, senior research fellow at BIDS, were present as guest speakers.
What types of threats we can face amid this second wave of COVID-19 and what can be the steps to overcome the challenge? Dr M Abu Eusuf believes creating more employment opportunities is the key.
“Those who lost their jobs can be given new opportunities in the development sector or any infrastructural project of the government. Situation can be turned around then. I think the government should focus especially on these jobless people and prepare a budget giving them the priority.”
Dr Jakir Hossain talked about the bank loan for small and cottage industry workers. However, he also focused on the worker's capacity to make products and sell.
“At first, we have to make a database of those people who actually depend on small and cottage industries and then according to their capacity to use the loan and ability to move their business, they should be given bank loans to improve their condition.”
On the other hand, Dr Naznin Ahmed recommended creating loans for the severely affected section both by banks and NGOs.
“If we want to stand against the economic challenges, we must prioritise small and cottage industries. They must be given more time to repay the loans as well.”
At the end, all three speakers expressed their hope for a turn around provided that the government can reach the most needy section with financial aid.