Issue Brief on “Enough of Economic Boom – Assessing Bangladesh’s Move toward IMF”

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So far, Bangladesh has been viewed as an unheralded economic success story. However, on 22nd July 2022, one of its leading newspapers, The Daily Star reported that Bangladesh was knocking at the doors of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), seeking a loan of around $4.5 billion.[1] The IMF is not the only institution that the country has sought help from.  Bangladesh has also reached out to the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank seeking a loan of $1 billion from each of them. [2]

Bangladesh has come a long way in its economic progress. In 1971, it was counted as one of the poorest countries in the world by the World Bank.[3] The country reached lower-middle income status in 2015. It was estimated that by 2026, Bangladesh would leave the United Nations list of the Least Developed Countries. [4] Therefore, its recent bid seeking loans came out as a shock for many. However, careful analysis of the successive events of past years indicates the inevitability of the move.

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