Budget FY2018-19 | The Daily Star
  • Ensuring inclusion of persons with disabilities

    Bangladesh has prioritised “disability” as one of the major thematic areas of its development agenda. The country has already put necessary policy frameworks in place to ensure disability-inclusive development.

  • Our economic and political choices now will determine our children's future

    Unicef and other organisations have been advocating for a long time that this allocation should be at least 20 percent of the total. What are your thoughts on this year's proposed allocation? I think it's a milestone moment for Bangladesh. Bangladesh is on the path of transition to a developing country. Now, alongside rapid economic development, inequality can also grow. But there are also more resources available, so the economic and political choices that are made today will determine the future.

  • Prioritising effective social safety net projects

    The idea of the universal pension scheme is new, but it's just a good idea. With our bureaucratic inefficiency, it's highly unlikely that we would be able to make headway in this regard in the near future.

  • Are we giving enough priority to education?

    The size of our budget is continually expanding. So, on the face of it, we will see that the allocation for education has increased. But if we take a closer look, we will see that as a percentage of the total budget, the allocation has actually decreased. Even in the revised budget of the last fiscal year, the education budget was over 12 percent of the total. Now in 2018-19, even before the revision—budget allocation usually decreases after revision—the allocation has been reduced to 11.41 percent. This is disappointing.

  • A problem of vision and strategic thinking

    In the education circle, the low share of GDP allocation for education in the national budget is a recurrent theme. Benchmark numbers in this respect are 6 percent of GDP and/or at least 20 percent of the national budget (depending on the public finance structure of the country) as recommended by UNESCO and at other international forums. Bangladesh's public spending for education is only about one-third by GDP measure and a little over half by national budget measure of what is recommended.