Coping With COVID-19: The Case of Bangladesh

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Coping With COVID-19: The Case of Bangladesh

08, June 2020 | Bangladesh




The COVID-19 pandemic is a major catastrophe which has the potential for unprecedented loss of lives unless effective measures are taken to contain it. Governments all over the world have introduced various measures to contain the spread of infection; the chief among them is social distancing, more accurately described as physical distancing. As an immediate consequence of enforced distancing on a wide scale, a large part of economic activities has come to a standstill. The resulting shutdown of the economy, while essential for limiting the spread of infection, has potentially disastrous consequences not just for economic growth but also for the lives and livelihoods of millions of people who have been forced to stop working.1 Our societies are thus caught in a cruel dilemma: the economy must be shut down to ensure effective physical distancing, otherwise too many lives will be lost; and yet shutting down the economy has its own dire consequences. The present paper seeks to present an integrated policy framework for dealing with this dilemma in Bangladesh.