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POST TIME: 9 December, 2019 11:22:54 PM / LAST MODIFIED: 10 December, 2019 01:35:27 AM
Bangladesh cuts hunger rate
SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT, Dhaka

Bangladesh cuts hunger rate

Bangladesh has managed to reduce the hunger rate, but severity still remains serious as it ranks 88th among 117 qualifying countries in the latest Global Hunger Index (GHI) 2019, a position much ahead of India. The current score of Bangladesh is 25.8, Its previous score was 30.3 in 2010. Among the South Asian countries, India is ranked 102nd with a score of 30.3. Sri Lanka is ranked the highest at 66th with a score of 17.1, while Afghanistan is ranked the lowest with a score of 33.8. Pakistan is ranked 94th with a score of 28.5. The GHI report was launched yesterday at the CIRDAP auditorium in the presence of agriculture minister Abdur Razzaque as the chief guest. Welt Hunger Hilfe, Helvetas Bangladesh, and Concern Worldwide jointly organised the launch programme in Bangladesh. The report was officially unveiled globally on October 15 this year, according to the organisers.

In the launch programme, Bangladesh National Nutrition Council director general Md Shah Newaz said the report has been published on the basis of 2014 data.

Had it been prepared on the basis of current data, Bangladesh’s rank would have been between 60 to 70 because the government has taken several steps to eliminate poverty and ensure nutrition in the country, he added.

He also said that the government has spent around Tk 23,000 crore in the nutrition sector to ensure nutrition for the people. “Bangladesh is improving its rank in the GHI. The country has done well in reducing the child mortality rate and will do well in other indexes too,” he said while speaking on the occasion.

Various programmes have been taken up by the government for the social safety net, he said, adding that Bangladesh has achieved tremendous success in the agricultural sector by taking time-befitting steps.

“Bangladesh has created an example across the world in producing crops despite a

reduction in arable land, suffering natural disasters, climate change, floods, droughts, salinity, and population growth. It currently tops the list of countries developing new varieties of rice that are flood, drought, salinity, and disaster tolerant,” said the agriculture minister.

Safe and nutritious food is a chain involving farmers, consumers, and economic sectors, Razzaque said, adding that the government has been working to ensure nutrition for all in the country.