Information Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud today said Bangladesh's GDP tops almost all countries in Asia even amid the Coronavirus epidemic as the wheels of economy have been kept moving for dynamic leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
"As per the record of Asian Development Bank (ADB), the growth of GDP in Bangladesh is 5.2 percent in 2020 while the GDP growth is minus 0.9 in India, minus 0.4 in Pakistan, minus 5.5 in Sri Lanka, 1.8 in China, minus 8 in Thailand, minus 7.3 in the Philippines and minus 6.2 in Singapore," he said.
The information minister came up with these observations at a view exchange meeting with newsmen at the meeting room of his ministry at Secretariat in the capital.
In the beginning, Hasan praised the journalists for their brave role during the Covid-19 situation and prayed for early recovery of the journalists who are infected with the virus.
The information minister also prayed for eternal peace of the departed souls of those who died due to the virus.
He said many people expressed their apprehensions of having a sorry state of economy, life and livelihood when general leave was declared in the country and everything got stuck due to the Coronavirus. Many predicted that the country would face a horrible situation in terms of life and livelihood, he added.
But, the information minister said, apprehensions of all including experts at home and abroad have been proved wrong and not a single person died due to starvation for proper leadership and pragmatic steps of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. There has been no dearth of food in the country during the last six and a half months for the financial assistance provided to people and implementation of economic stimulus, he added.
The information minister said it has been possible only for the dynamic leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. "Premier Sheikh Hasina successfully involved masses in combating the pandemic and also the leaders and workers of Awami League. The leaders and activists of Awami League devoted themselves to combating the epidemic responding to her (Sheikh Hasina) call," said Hasan, also AL joint general secretary.
Referring to the Premier's round-the-clock works, he said Sheikh Hasina didn't sit for a single day during the last six and a half months. She didn't only hold meetings of Cabinet or ECNEC, but also held meetings with different district and divisional level administrations regularly for facilitating other works, he added.
The information minister said these works were stopped in many countries, "but it was not stopped in our country". For this, wheels of the country's economy keep running.
Hasan said there were criticisms regarding handling of the Covid-19. "But, the situation of Bangladesh in combating Covid-19 is better than other countries. The rate of death among the infected people is 1.4 percent while it is 1.6 percent in India, 2.09 percent in Pakistan, 10.36 percent in the United Kingdom, 9.46 in Belgium, 6.71 percent in Germany and 3 percent in the USA," he added.
The information minister said the death rate would be less if the people would go for test. "I would like to say that the scale of diagnosis of Coronavirus in Bangladesh almost matches Japan, meaning we are in better position in combating corona," Hasan added.