REES Visiting Speaker Seminar: Dr. Shahidul Islam, Friday, October 21, 2022

Date(s) - 21/10/2022
3:30 pm - 5:00 pm
550 General Services Building, 550 General Services Building University of Alberta , Edmonton Alberta

Title: Fifty Years of Agricultural Development in Bangladesh

Speaker: Dr. Shahidul Islam, Associate Professor of Economics, MacEwan University

Date: Friday, October 21, 2022

Location: 550 General Services Building

This seminar will be in-person only, no Zoom.

Time: 3:30 – 5:00 pm


Since its independence in 1971, Bangladesh has made remarkable economic progress, evolving
from a low-income to a lower-middle-income country. Its agricultural sector remains essential
for the economy and food and nutrition requirements despite having a gradually declining share
of GDP and employment. Bangladesh underwent a typical sectoral transformation in
employment and GDP growth, transferring labor from low-productive agriculture to high-
productive manufacturing and service sectors. Such a transformation was due to the declining
labor demand in the agriculture sector because of growing mechanization and the increased labor
demand from rural off-farm activities and manufacturing and service sectors, resulting in
enhanced rural wages and standard of living. The agriculture sector of Bangladesh, despite its
continuously declining contribution to GDP, remains vital for sustained food and nutrition
security and economic growth. Low output elasticities in agriculture imply a limited growth
possibility with the existing technology. However, despite this and several other constraints, the
agriculture sector has potential for growth by developing and adopting appropriate technology
and realizing efficiency gains from proper input and output mixes. These need to be supported by
relevant policies and institutions. As land is a significant constraint, less land-intensive
subsectors like livestock, poultry, and fish production should receive attention.

Shahidul Islam, Ph.D. in Agricultural Economics from Oregon State University. Associate
Professor of Economics at MacEwan University.


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