Food for All
In its latest bid to resolve the on-going food crisis in the country, the Bangladeshi government has announced a U.S. $8 billion plan to ensure food security over the next five years.
Muhammad Abdur Razzaque, Minister for Food and Disaster Management, informed the media that the government has finalized the investment for food security in the country until 2015 and had full support from its development partners to implement it.
The Minister expected financial assistance worth $5 billion from the donor agencies whereas the rest of the money “will be arranged” from the government’s funds. Razzaque said public sector investment in agriculture has declined and this trend must be reversed to ensure food for all. He also hoped the plan will ensure employment opportunities for the masses.
Bangladesh, like other Asian and African nations, has moved to build stocks of staples such as rice and wheat in order to combat surging food costs and avoid future supply shocks. Nearly 40 percent of Bangladesh’s more than 150 million people live in poverty, surviving on less than $1 a day.
The government is importing 3 million tons of food grain, including 1.2 million tons of rice, this fiscal year, up from nearly 550,000 tons in the previous year to secure supplies amid soaring prices in global markets.