Published:  01:10 AM, 10 October 2019

Bangladesh slips two notches in GCI

Bangladesh slips two notches in GCI Executive Director of Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) Dr Fahmida Khatun speaking along with CPD Research Director Dr Khondaker Golam Moazzem at a press conference at the Economic Reporters' Forum (ERF) auditorium in the capital.

Bangladesh has been placed in the 105th position among 141 countries in the Global Competitiveness Index (GCI) 2019 released by World Economic Forum (WEF) on Wednesday.

Last year, Bangladesh ranked 102nd position among 140 countries. Like the previous year, the overall score of the country remains unchanged at 52.1 this year. Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD), a partner of WEF, released the report at a press conference at the Economic Reporters' Forum (ERF) auditorium in the capital.

CPD Research Director Dr Khondaker Golam Moazzem read out the report in the press conference. "The overall score of Bangladesh has remained unchanged. Bangladesh's position has improved in case of product market and health. In case of product market, its position is 36th," Moazzem said. In the report, Singapore ranked top in the 2019 GCI followed by the USA, Hong Kong, Netherlands, Switzerland, Japan, Germany, Sweden, the UK and Denmark.

India ranked top among the South Asian countries securing the 68th position with score 61.4, Sri Lanka ranked 84th with score 57.1, Nepal 108th with score 51.6 and Pakistan 110th with score 51.4. The World Economic Forum (WEF) has been publishing the index since 2001.

A total of 12 determinants, including institutions, infrastructure, ICT adoption, macroeconomics stability, health, skills, product market, labor market, financial system, market size, business dynamism and innovative capability, of a country are estimated to make the GCI report.

At the press conference, CPD also unveiled the findings of the study on "The Bangladesh Business Environment Study 2019".

While presenting the findings of the study, Golam Moazzem said Bangladesh should address four key challenges to ensure business-friendly environment and improve its position in the Global Competitiveness Report. At first, he said, Bangladesh should provide more focus on improvement of the governance and institutions, infrastructure, financial system and business operations. "Lack of preparedness for fourth industrial revolution (4IR) technologies, absence of necessary regulatory framework and skills and no clear pathways for businesses are the emerging concerns," he added.

The CPD research director also pointed out that emerging market risks pose additional burden for businesses, like rise in energy price, failure in urban planning, underemployment, failure to climate change adaptation and industrial pollution. Lastly, he said, Bangladesh should also address the challenge of ensuring macroeconomic stability to make the country as a developed one.

Moazzem underscored the need for massive regulatory reform targeting public services, financial sector and public sector enterprises with a view to ensuring efficiency, accountability and transparency. He said technology sector needs a fresh outlook since a large pool of labor force would become a burden in the long run unless proper initiatives are undertaken.

He urged the authorities concerned of the different regulatory bodies and business facilities public organizations to be proactive and effective in delivering services. Among others, CPD Executive Director Dr Fahmida Khatun and Senior Research Fellow Towfiqul Islam Khan were present on the occasion.

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