Bangladesh food

No major food shortage in Bangladesh, says World Bank

TBS Report

August 18, 2022, 11:05 p.m.

Last modification: August 18, 2022, 11:21 p.m.

Countries heavily dependent on imported cereals are already facing acute food insecurity. Photo: Reuters.

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Countries heavily dependent on imported cereals are already facing acute food insecurity. Photo: Reuters.

Although food price inflation has remained at high levels for several years in South Asian countries, there was no major food shortage in Bangladesh in July, the World Bank said on Thursday.

Pakistan has seen some decline in wheat and rice production (due to lack of fertilizer and a heat wave), and Bhutan and Sri Lanka are experiencing significant shortages of domestic food supplies, according to World Bank South Asia Food Security Update.

The Bangladeshi government has reduced rice import tariffs, increased budget allocation to agriculture, increased fertilizer subsidies and provided a cash incentive to exporters, the World Bank said.

According to the report, food price inflation reached 8.3% in Bangladesh, 80% in Sri Lanka and 26% in Pakistan.

The World Bank said Bhutan is stockpiling essential food items directly and through concessional working capital to wholesalers and retailers, while the government of Pakistan has provided targeted subsidies and increased coverage of social protection programs. to protect the poorest households from high food prices.

According to the statement, agricultural production in Sri Lanka has declined by 40% to 50% due to fertilizer shortages, and there is a lack of foreign currency to purchase food imports.

Some relief comes from the first shipment of 44,000 tonnes of urea backed by Indian credit (21,000 tonnes expected to arrive soon).