Policies for equal access to work

“We must work together to ensure the equitable distribution of wealth, opportunity, and power in our society.” – Nelson Mandela, State of the Nation Address, Parliament, Cape Town, South Africa, February 9, 1996.  The statement above holds true for all countries irrespective of economic conditions or political system. At the Davos forum this January, Oxfam… Read More

We have come a long way

Poverty is a multidimensional crisis encompassing social, economic and political components. In the last two decades, Bangladesh has shown tremendous progress in both absolute and social poverty alleviation. According to Asian Development Bank’s Country Partnership Strategy, population below poverty line almost halved from 56.6 million in 1990 to 23.6 million in 2016. In the process,… Read More

Climate change and food security

Bangladesh is among the most precarious and unpredictable countries due to climate risks (Bangladesh Country Study, 2013). It is regularly stricken by annual flooding, or shortage of water during dry seasons; it frequently suffers from cyclones, storm surges, along with changing groundwater aquifer situations. Most of the land mass comprises of floodplains, and up to… Read More

ASEAN and the Rohingya Crisis

DHAKA – The worsening plight of Muslim Rohingya communities in Myanmar’s Rakhine state could soon imperil the country’s government, as well as the reputation of its leader, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. The crisis has been escalating since last October, when Myanmar’s military launched an offensive in which 130 Rohingya… Read More

Speak up for the Rohingyas

How India responds to the crisis will give a clue to its aspirations as a South Asian power As a response to protests in East and South Asia and beyond over the deteriorating Rohingya situation in Rakhine, Myanmar called for a special meeting with Foreign Ministers of ASEAN last Monday in Yangon. The crisis has… Read More

A wrong turn with the Rohingyas

Myanmar’s de facto ruler Aung San Suu Kyi has called for a special informal meeting with Foreign Ministers of ASEAN next Monday in Yangon to discuss international concerns over the state of the Rohingya Muslims in Rakhine. Since October 9, when soldiers poured into Rakhine, over 130 Rohingyas have been killed and dozens of buildings… Read More

A Trump-led US will need to wake up to the economic realities of a strong Asia

Mr. Syed Munir Khasru says US President-elect Donald Trump has to get over his populist rhetoric and realise that, in today’s globalised world, Asia is a mighty economic force In 1990, Asia’s share of world GDP in real terms was 23 per cent. This rose to 38.8 per cent in 2015 and is expected to… Read More

The power of Bollywood

It is the perfect medium for India to win the hearts and minds of millions, including in Pakistan and other parts of South Asia The India-Pakistan conflict has sadly spilled into the cultural realm, attenuating forces that provide the little glimmer of hope for an integrated, peaceful and prosperous South Asia: culture, arts, music, movies,… Read More

Cancelled SAARC summit exposes Pakistan’s foreign policy failure, whose root cause is its obsession with India

With five out of seven neighbours of Pakistan withdrawing from the SAARC summit scheduled to be held in Islamabad next month, the dismal failure of Pakistan’s diplomacy has been exposed. SAARC’s mechanism dictates that non-participation of any one member will result in cancellation of the summit. Yet five member nations officiated their withdrawal, showing how… Read More

Why ‘love thy neighbour’ is still great advice for China and India

Mr. Syed Munir Khasru says given the significant influence of the two countries over the entire Asia-Pacific, they could learn from the EU and find ways to come together for greater regional prosperity Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s (王毅) meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj in New Delhi on… Read More