Given the widening gap among the various stakeholders in Bangladesh’s agricultural sector, the five-year agricultural policy activity is being implemented to streamline the agriculture that would benefit growers, traders and consumers by sustainable economic growth and nutrition practices.
The policy activity was launched on 5 September last year and will continue till 3 September 2025.
Supported by the USAID, the policy activity supports four policy pillar areas–seed sector, food safety, social safety net system and nutrition to improve formulation, analysis, advocacy, reform and implementation of agricultural policy.
Participants in the event were welcomed by John Smith-Sreen, the office director (economic growth) at USAID, Bangladesh.
The acting country leader at the Agricultural Policy Activity, Chuck Chopak briefed about the five-year project.
He said that the policy interventions would promote a more inclusive and accountable governance of agricultural and food security policies, available resources and the value-chain systems.
Shahidur Bhuiyan, the deputy country leader of the project, presented his keynotes on the existing agricultural policy challenges in the country. He said that implementation of policies on agriculture takes huge time due to multi-ministry involvements.
Moreover, the policy language often seems non-communicative to the local actors. The tax structure is still unfavourable to boost light engineering in the local agriculture. He also mentioned that private sector has limited access to mobilisation of new seed varieties while there is limited incentive for scientists and institutions to maintain seed purity.
Supreme Seed Company’s AHM Humayun Kabir said Bangladesh needs climate resilient varieties that would need less land and water to boost agricultural productivity in the climate vulnerable regions.
Journalist Reaz Ahmed said that regulators in agricultural biosafety sector in Bangladesh need to be educated. “Because of their inefficiencies, archaic thinking, new frontier science-derived crops like Golden Rice is not reaching out to our farmers,” he wrote in the comment box.
Fareyzul Haque Ansarey, managing director and CEO of ACI Agribusinesses, Nathu Ram Sarker, director general (PRL) of Bangladesh Livestock Research Institute and Mehedi Hasan, programme management specialist at USAID, Bangladesh, among others, also spoke.
Consultant at Agricultural Policy Acitivity, Abir Chowdhury moderated the discussion.