Accepted paper:

Liberalised market policy with state commitment to growth: the case of Bangladesh


Mozammel Huq (University of Strathclyde)

Paper short abstract:

The paper aims to analyse the liberalized trade regime which has been in operation in Bangladesh since the mid-1980s. However, the Government is also firm in its commitment to growing the economy. The change in the policy regime and also the achievements and the concerns will be closely examined.

Paper long abstract:

As in many other developing countries, Bangladesh has gone through a major transformation in the economic strategy being pursued: starting with a socialist type of regime with significant state controls in resource allocation. There took place a change in economic policy in the mid-1980s with a move towards a liberlised market economy. The change in the policy regime is found to have helped the economy to grow faster: with an average annual GDP growth rate of 5.58 per cent during 2000-2010, compared to 4.02 per cent during 1980-1990. The corresponding figure during the last two years (2005-2017) is even faster, 7.20 per cent. However, the Government of Bangladesh appears to be following a hybrid type of liberalised policy regime with the state remaining firm in its commitment to growth in a number of key areas including savings, investment, exports and remittances, thus helping to ease in particular the savings-investment gap and the foreign exchange gap in its development pursuits. Indeed, the Government of Bangladesh is currently focused on GDP growth acceleration, employment generation and rapid poverty reduction (7th Five-Year Plan, 2016-2020). Also, with its Vision 2041, the Government is keen to move the economy forward, thus helping to turn it into a developed country by 2041. The paper aims to analyse the change in the policy regimes and, in particular, examine in some detail the various achievements and also the concerns.

panel L1
30 years after 1989: re-assessing models of market transition