Tag Archives: Dhaka

First blast resistant, biofortified wheat variety released in Bangladesh-A great breakthrough of Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute

First blast resistant, biofortified wheat variety released in Bangladesh

by Hans Braun, Pawan Singh, Ravi Singh, Shahidul Haque Khan, Velu Govindan / October 18, 2017

Members of National Technical Committee of NSB evaluating BAW 1260 in the field. Photo: CIMMYT
Members of National Technical Committee of NSB evaluating BAW 1260, the breeding line used to develop BARI Gom 33. Photo: CIMMYT

DHAKA, Bangladesh (CIMMYT) — As wheat farmers in Bangladesh struggle to recover from a 2016 outbreak of a mysterious disease called “wheat blast,” the country’s National Seed Board (NSB) released a new, high-yielding, blast-resistant wheat variety, according to a communication from the Wheat Research Centre (WRC) in Bangladesh.

Called “BARI Gom 33,” the variety was developed by WRC using a breeding line from the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), a Mexico-based organization that has collaborated with Bangladeshi research organizations for decades, according to Naresh C. Deb Barma, Director of WRC, who said the variety had passed extensive field and laboratory testing. “Gom” means “wheat grain” in Bangla, the Bengali language used in Bangladesh.

“This represents an incredibly rapid response to blast, which struck in a surprise outbreak on 15,000 hectares of wheat in southwestern Bangladesh just last year, devastating the crop and greatly affecting farmers’ food security and livelihoods, not to mention their confidence in sowing wheat,” Barma said.

Caused by the fungus Magnaporthe oryzae pathotype triticum, wheat blast was first identified in Brazil in 1985 and has constrained wheat farming in South America for decades. Little is known about the genetics or interactions of the fungus with wheat or other hosts. Few resistant varieties have been released in Brazil, Bolivia and Paraguay, the countries most affected by wheat blast.

The Bangladesh outbreak was its first appearance in South Asia, a region where rice-wheat cropping rotations cover 13 million hectares and over a billion inhabitants eat wheat as main staple.

Many blast fungal strains are impervious to fungicides, according to Pawan Singh, a CIMMYT wheat pathologist. “The Bangladesh variant is still sensitive to fungicides, but this may not last forever, so we’re rushing to develop and spread new, blast-resistant wheat varieties for South Asia,” Singh explained.

The urgent global response to blast received a big boost in June from the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), which funded an initial four-year research project to breed blast resistant wheat varieties and the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), which also provided grant to kick-start the work in South Asia. Led by CIMMYT, the initiative involves researchers from nearly a dozen institutions worldwide.

Chemical controls are costly and potentially harmful to human and environmental health, so protecting crops like wheat with inherent resistance is the smart alternative, but resistance must be genetically complex, combining several genes, to withstand new mutations of the pathogen over time.

Key partners in the new project are the agricultural research organizations of Bangladesh, including the Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute (BARI), and the Instituto Nacional de Innovación Agropecuaria y Forestal in Bolivia, which will assist with large-scale field experiments to select wheat lines under artificial and natural infections of wheat blast.

Other partners include national and provincial research organizations in India, Nepal and Pakistan, as well as Kansas State University (KSU) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Services (USDA-ARS). The U.S. Agency for International Agricultural Development (USAID) has also supported efforts to kick-start blast control measures, partnerships and upscaling the breeding, testing and seed multiplication of new, high-yielding, disease resistant varieties through its Feed the Future project.

BARI Gom 33 was tested for resistance to wheat blast in field trials in Bolivia and Bangladesh and in greenhouse tests by the USDA-ARS laboratory at Fort Detrick, Maryland. International partnerships are critical for a fast response to wheat blast, according to Hans-Joachim Braun, director of CIMMYT’s Global Wheat Program.

“Worldwide, we’re in the middle of efforts that include blast surveillance and forecasting, studies on the pathogen’s genetics and biology, integrated disease management and seed systems, as well as raising awareness about the disease and training for researchers, extension workers, and farmers,” said Braun.

With over 160 million people, Bangladesh is among the world’s most densely populated countries. Wheat is Bangladesh’s second most important staple food, after rice. The country grows more than 1.3 million tons each year but consumes 4.5 million tons, meaning that imports whose costs exceed $0.7 billion each year comprise more than two-thirds of domestic wheat grain use.

WRC will produce tons of breeder’s seed of BARI Gom 33 each year. This will be used by the Bangladesh Agricultural Development Corporation (BADC) and diverse non-governmental organizations and private companies to produce certified seed for farmers.

“This year WRC will provide seed to BADC for multiplication and the Department of Agricultural Extension will establish on-farm demonstrations of the new variety in blast prone districts during 2017-18,” said Barma.

As an added benefit for the nutrition of wheat consuming households, BARI Gom 33 grain features 30 percent higher levels of zinc than conventional wheat. Zinc is a critical micronutrient missing in the diets of many of the poor throughout South Asia and whose lack particularly harms the health of pregnant women and children under 5 years old.

With funding from HarvestPlus and the CGIAR Research Program on Agriculture for Nutrition, CIMMYT is leading global efforts to breed biofortified wheat with better agronomic and nutritional quality traits. The wheat line used in BARI Gom 33 was developed at CIMMYT, Mexico, through traditional cross-breeding and shared with Bangladesh and other cooperators in South Asia through the Center’s International Wheat Improvement Network, which celebrates 50 years in 2018.

Stable window 1 and 2 (W1W2) funding from CGIAR enabled CIMMYT and partners to react quickly and screen breeding lines in Bolivia, as well as working with KSU to identify sources of wheat blast resistance. The following W1 funders have made wheat blast resistance breeding possible: Australia, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Canada, France, India, Japan, Korea, New Zeland, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the World Bank. The following funders also contributed vital W2 funding: Australia, China, the United Kingdom (DFID) and USAID.

(This report has been taken from the website of CIMMYT,http://www.cimmyt.org for greater dissemination to inform and inspire all concerned.I specially congratulate the team of scientists for this great breakthrough.I also thank the funding agencies for their great contributions towards food and nutrition security.I heartily acknowledge the authors of the article,”First blast resistant, biofortified wheat variety released in Bangladesh” who depicted the details of the breakthrough and published at http://www.cimmyt.org/first-blast-resistant-biofortified-wheat-variety-released-in-bangladesh)

Seminar on Improved Flower Cultivation Methods and Potentiality of Export Organized by Export Promotion Bureau of Bangladesh : Dr Syed Md Zainul Abedin

Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) of Bangladesh organized a special seminar on Improved Flower Cultivation Methods and Potentiality of Export on 25 January,2017 at its head office located in Kawran Bazar,Dhaka.Dr. Farjana Nasrin Khan,Senior Scientific Officer of Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute (BARI) presented the keynote paper at the seminar.A good number of stakeholders of the promising flower industry attended the seminar.The existing situation of flower industry and way forward were revealed in the seminar.

The seminar was initiated by the welcome address of Mr. Md Jahangir Hossain, Director (Policy and Planning),EPB. Mrs.Mafruha Sultana,Vice Chairman,EPB presented the inaugural speech and declared the seminar open.She elaborated the programmes of EPB regarding the export of flowers from Bangladesh and stated that all necessary measures would be taken to support export of flowers.

Dr. Farjana Nasrin Khan presented the keynote paper emphasizing all aspects of flower farming and export.She pointed out the prospects and constraints in connection with the production of quality flowers and their export.After her lively presentation
the floor was opened for discussion and question and answer session.Professor Dr. AFM Jamal Uddin of Sher-e-Bangla Agricultural University,Dr.Shah Md.Shaiful Islam of Shah nursery Jhenaidah,Kazi Liakat Ali of Root and Shoot,Mr.A K M Manirul Alam,Deputy Director(Fruit and Flower) of Horticulture Wing of Department of Agricultural Extension(DAE),Mr.Mohammad Quamaruzzaman,Senior Assistant Secretary of Bangladesh Export Processing Zone (BEPZA),Ms.Kamrunnahar,Additional Deputy Director of Plant Quarantine Wing of DAE and a number of other participants joined in the open discussion and presented very important points for successful management of flower production and export.
Mr.Avijit Chowdhury,Director General-1,Export Promotion Bureau concluded the seminar with optimism and thanked the keynote presenter and participants for their valuable contributions.

Mr.Md. Jakir Hossain,Deputy Director(Policy),EPB conducted the event.

The seminar was a milestone for the flower industry of Bangladesh.It may be reasonably hoped that the flowers grown by Bangladeshi farmers will soon bring recognition for Bangladesh in the foreign countries and strengthen the economy of Bangladesh.

Concluding Session of the First Annual National Conference on Urban Resilience held in Dhaka Bangladesh on 19 December 2016

The First Annual National Conference on Urban Resilience was organized in Dhaka,Bangladesh during 17-19 December,2016.The first ever event on such important issue was organized by International Centre for Climate Change and Development (ICCCAD) at Independent University Bangladesh (IUB), and Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network (ACCCRN), Bangladesh.The three day long activity was held in the Spectra Convention Centre with participation of large number of experts from relevant disciplines.The First Annual National Conference on Urban Resilience succeeded to engage participants and different stakeholders from different government, private sectors, NGOs,Donors,INGOs, academics and communities to come up with more sound solution under the context of urban development.
I am adding the video of the concluding session of the three day event which summarized the findings of the event and announced the way forward.

Agricultural Programmes of Television and Radio of Bangladesh : Syeda Tasnim Jannat

The electronic media of Bangladesh play vital role in disseminating and popularizing agricultural technologies.Among the electronic media television and radio contribute immensely for enhancing the spread of agricultural technologies.The regular extension service run by public agencies and non government organizations is strengthened by the contributions of electronic media.

You can have an idea from the following information that both  public and private electronic media are contributing for disseminating agricultural technologies.Since the economy of Bangladesh is chiefly  based on agriculture all electronic media should engage more time and resources on this sector.However,the electronic media who have come forward in popularizing agricultural technologies,practices and business must be congratulated for understanding the reality.

Agricultural Programmes of Television and Radio of Bangladesh


Media Programme (with brief description) Frequency
Bangladesh Television(BTV)Public terrestrial TV Channel 1.Mati o Manush(Soil and Man),a popular programme showing agricultural technologies and disseminating relevant information.2.Banglar Krishi(Agriculture of Bengal),regular daily technology disseminating programme3.Krishi Songbad(Agriculture News),agricultural news Telecast on five days a week at 0700 P.M. on Monday,Tuesday and Wednesday and at 0610 A.M. on Thursday and Friday.The programme is retelecast on the following days at 0810 A.M.2.Telecast everyday at 0725 A.M.3.Telecast regularly with news
Channel IPrivate TV Channel 1.Hridoye Mati o Manush(Soil and Man in the Heart)2.Hridoye Mati o Manusher Dak(Call of Soil and Man in the Heart)3.Krishi Songbad(Agriculture News) 1.Telecast on Saturday at 0935 P.M. and retelecast on Sunday at 1130 A.M.2.Telecast on 0305 P.M.3.Telecast regularly with all news
Bangla VisionPrivate TV Channel 1.Shaymol Bangla(Green Bangla) 1.Telecast on Thursday at 0550 P.M.Retelecast on Thurday at 0330 A.M.,Friday at 0830 A.M. and on Wednesday at 0930 A.M.
Boishakhi TelevisionPrivate TV Channel Krishi o Jibon(Agriculture and Life) Telecast on Sunday at 0620 A.M. and retelecast on Monday at 0230 A.M.
GTVPrivate TV Channel Shobuj Bangla(Green Bangla) Telecast on Friday at 0630 A.M.and retelecast on Friday at 0945 A.M.,Saturday at 1130 A.M. and Monday at 0530 P.M.
Bangladesh Betar,Dhaka(Radio Bangladesh,Dhaka) 1.Desh Amar Mati Amar(My Country My Soil),National programme2.Krishi Shomachar(Agricultural Affairs),National programme3.Shonali Foshol(Golden Crop),Regional Programme4.Shobuj Prantor(Green Field),National programme5.Shoshho Shaymol(Green Crop),National programme

6.Amar Desh(My Country),

National programme

1.Broadcast daily at 0705-0730 P.M.2.Broadcast daily at 0625-0630 A.M.3.Broadcast daily at 0605-0635P.M.4.Broadcast on Fridays at 0550-0600 P.M.5.Broadcast on the 3rd Thursdays at 0830-0900 P.M.6.Broadcast daily at 0435-0435 P.M.
Bangladesh Betar,Chittagong 1.Krishi Shomachar (Agricultural Affairs),Regional programme2.Krishi Khamar ( AgriculturalFarm),Regional programme 1.Broadcast daily at 0625-0630 A.M. in Summer and at 0655-0700 A.M.in Winter2.Broadcast daily at 0610-0650 P.M.
Bangladesh Betar,Khulna 1.Krishi Shomachar (Agricultural Affairs),Regional programme2.Chashabad(Cultivation),Regional programme 1.Broadcast daily at 0625-0630 A.M. in Summer and at 0655-0700 A.M.in Winter2.Broadcast daily at 0610-0650 P.M.
Bangladesh Betar,Rangpur 1.Krishi Shomachar (Agricultural Affairs),Regional programme2.Khet Khamare(In Field and Farm),Regional programme 1.Broadcast daily at 0625-0630 A.M. in Summer and at 0655-0700 A.M.in Winter2.Broadcast daily at 0605-0635 P.M.
Bangladesh Betar,Rajshahi 1.Khet Khamar Shomachar ( Affairs of Field and Farm),Regional programme2.Shobuj Bangla(Green Bangla),Regional programme 1.Broadcast daily at 0625-0630 A.M. in Summer and at 0655-0700 A.M.in Winter2.Broadcast daily at 0605-0645P.M.
Bangladesh Betar,Sylhet 1.Ajker Chashabad(Today’s Cultivation),Regional programme2.Shaymol Sylhet(Green Sylhet),Regional programme 1.Broadcast daily at 0625-0630 A.M. in Summer and at 0655-0700 A.M.in Winter2.Broadcast daily at 0605-0645P.M. except Friday
Bangladesh Betar,Rangamati Khamarbari (Farmhouse),Regional programme Broadcast daily at 0320-0330 P.M.
Bangladesh Betar,Bandarban Krishikotha(Agriculture Talk),Regional programme Broadcast on Sunday,Monday,Tuesday and Wednesday at 0405-0425 P.M.
Bangladesh Betar,Barisal Krishikotha(Agriculture Talk),Regional programme Broadcast on Saturday,Monday,Tuesday,Thursday and Friday at 0315-0335 P.M.
Bangladesh Betar,Cox’s Bazar Shonali Prantor(Golden Field),Regional programme Broadcast on Friday,Saturday,Sunday and Tuesday at 0305-0330 P.M.
Bangladesh Betar,Thakurgaon Kishan Mati Desh(Farmer Soil Country),Regional programme Broadcast on Friday,Saturday,Monday and Wednesday at 0605-0630 P.M.
Bangladesh Betar,Comilla Shujola Shufola (Well-watered Well-produced )Regional programme Broadcast on Sunday,Tuesday,and Thursday at 0520-0530 P.M.
Agricultural Radios

Various programmes ,

Regional programme

Broadcast daily from morning till night

Boishakhi TelevisionPrivate TV Channel          Shofolotar Shat Rong(Seven Colors of Success)                                                                                                                                                Broadcast on Saturday at 0300 P.M.

Seminar on Urban Mosquito Problem:Current Status and Management Options

A seminar has been organized by Zoological Society of Bangladesh on 1 February 2014 at the Conference Room of National Press Club,Dhaka,Bangladesh.The seminar is very important in the context of growing problems caused by mosquitoes in the recent years.
The seminar entitled,”Urban Mosquito Problem:Current Status and Management Options” will be attended by Mr. Sunil Kanti Bose, Chairman, Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission as the Chief Guest.Dr. Manjur A. Chowdhury, President, Zoological Society of Bangladesh will chair the seminar.
The detailed program of the seminar has been given below:

Seminar Program

Venue Conference Room, National Press Club, Topkhana Road, Dhaka

Date February 1, 2014 (Saturday)

10.30 AM Registration of participants. (Tea / Coffee)

11.00 AM Opening remarks, introduction of guests and speakers by Prof. Khan Habibur

Rahman, Vice President, Zoological Society of Bangladesh

11.10 AM Urban Mosquito Problem: An Overview.

Mr. Tauhid Uddin Ahmed, Former Head, Department of Entomology, IEDCR

11.15 AM Current Mosquito Population Density and Distribution in Dhaka City Area

Dr. Kabirul Bashar, Associate Professor, Department of Zoology,

Jahangirnagar University, Savar

11.30 AM Integrated Mosquito Management for Dhaka City: An Environment

Friendly Option.

Dr. Manjur A. Chowdhury, President, Zoological Society of Bangladesh

11:50 AM Role of Media in Integrated Mosquito Management Program

Mr. Masood Kamal, Senior News Editor, Banglavision

12.00 Noon Address by the Chief Guest, Mr. Sunil Kanti Bose,

Chairman, Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission

12:15 PM Open Discussion

12:45 PM Address by Dr. Manjur A. Chowdhury, President, Zoological Society

of Bangladesh.

12:55 PM Concluding remarks and vote of thanks

Prof. Khan Habibur Rahman, Vice President, Zoological Society of Bangladesh

01:00 PM Lunch

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Workshop on Research to Inform Food and Nutrition Security Policies in Dhaka,Bangladesh:Dr.Syed Md.Zainul Abedin


A two-day Workshop on Research to Inform Food and Nutrition Security Policies was held on  3-4  July 2013 in the Ball  Room of Hotel Ruposhi Bangla ,Dhaka,Bangladesh.

Hon’ble Food Minister Dr.Muhammad Abdur Razzaque MP graced  the Inaugural Session of the workshop as the Chief Guest.He stated in his inaugural speech that Bangladesh is now referred across the world as a country of success for its food security and its ability to address the climate change impacts.He also said,“Once Bangladesh was known as country of famine, drought and flood, but now it is referred across the world as a country of success for its food security and its ability to address the climate change impacts,”

Dr Razzaque said the government considers agriculture, food security and nutrition as major priority areas.“Although we’ve made impressive achievement in grain production, we’re still facing considerable challenges in the areas of nutritional improvement, climate change adaptation, scarce natural resources, and access to safe and nutritious food,” he said.The Food Minister said achieving food and nutrition security is considered by the government as a key development agenda to make the country a middle income one as envisaged in the ‘Vision 2021’.About the country’s success in fighting poverty, he said although Bangladesh still has significant level of poverty, it has made a lot of progress in reducing poverty over the last decade.“Recently, FAO has awarded Bangladesh in recognition of our notable and outstanding progress in fighting hunger… we’ve achieved the UN Millennium Development Goal-1 as the prevalence of undernourishment reduced from 34.6 percent in 1990-92 to 16.8 percent in 2010-12.”Referring to the government steps for ensuring food security, Dr Razzaque said the ‘Country Investment Plan’ has been prepared to implement the food security programs following the ‘Bangladesh Food Security Investment Forum’ held in Dhaka in 2010.
Dr Razzaque said the government considers agriculture, food security and nutrition as major priority areas.“Although we’ve made impressive achievement in grain production, we’re still facing considerable challenges in the areas of nutritional improvement, climate change adaptation, scarce natural resources, and access to safe and nutritious food,” he said.The Food Minister said achieving food and nutrition security is considered by the government as a key development agenda to make the country a middle income one as envisaged in the ‘Vision 2021’.About the country’s success in fighting poverty, he said although Bangladesh still has significant level of poverty, it has made a lot of progress in reducing poverty over the last decade.“Recently, FAO has awarded Bangladesh in recognition of our notable and outstanding progress in fighting hunger… we’ve achieved the UN Millennium Development Goal-1 as the prevalence of undernourishment reduced from 34.6 percent in 1990-92 to 16.8 percent in 2010-12.”Referring to the government steps for ensuring food security, Dr Razzaque said the ‘Country Investment Plan’ has been prepared to implement the food security programmes following the ‘Bangladesh Food Security Investment Forum’ held in Dhaka in 2010. –
FAO Representative in Bangladesh Mike Robson,  EU Bangladesh Delegation-Head of Section-Rural Development  Gonzalo Serrano, NFPCSP-FAO Chief Technical Adviser Ciro Fiorillo and FPMU Director General Naser Farid, spoke at the session. Acting Secretary  of Food Ministry Abdul Awal Hawlader presided.
Guest of Honor,Mr.Kostas G.Stamoulis,Director ESA Division,FAO,Italy sent a message for the success of the workshop since he could not attend the same due to some other appointment.


The workshop  held on 3-4 July 2013 has been organized to present final results from 14 research studies and preliminary results from other 2 studies.The Workshop marks the final stage of a process initiated in 2009 with the approval of sixteen research topics by the Ministry of Food,based on the Governments priorities on Food and Nutrition Security.The 16 research were thereafter commissioned to National Research Institutions through an  open competition,with 14 of them initiated in October 2011 and currently completed and other 2 initiated in April 2012 and expected to be completed in fall  2013.The research outcomes are intended to inform Government’s policy making on food and nutrition security.They have  already been used as references for producing the National Food Policy Plan of Action and Country Invest Plan Monitoring Report 2013 that is the annual Government’s  report reviewing progress towards the PoA and CIP’s objective and the evolution of financing and delivery under the CIP.

The participants of the workshop include representatives of the Government of  Bangladesh,Civil Society Organizations(CSOs),Development Partners(DPs),national experts,media and relevant personnel.

The objectives of the workshop are to:

1.Present and discuss results and recommendations of 14 research programs.

2.Review preliminary results of 2 on-going research programs.

It may be mentioned  that the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations(FAO) and the Food Planning and Monitoring Unit (FPMU) of the Ministry of Food,Government of Bangladesh are jointly implementing the National Food Policy Capacity Strengthening Program(NFPCSP) with the financial support of the European Union(EU) and USAID.The  NFPCSP (www.nfpcsp.org) helps to strengthen institutional and human capacities in Bangladesh to design,implement and monitor  food security policies.Through its Research Grant Scheme,the NFPCSP has funded 16 policy relevant food security and nutrition research programs that will provide concrete policy options for improving food and nutrition security in Bangladesh.

The workshop facilitated dialogue among food security and nutrition researchers,and between researchers and policy makers  to maximize impact of the research completed and promote policy relevance of the two on-going research projects.

Thematic areas of The Workshop on Research to Inform Food and Nutrition Security Policies

1.Food Composition,Food Utilization and Nutrition Thematic Area:

In promoting infant and young child feeding,mothers need to be aware of how to plan and prepare complementary foods and  feed their young   children with the right amount and the right types of foods.

Some options of improved complementary feeding recipes based on food diversity and nutrient adequacy,as well as cultural acceptability had been prepared  and  made available.Similarly,on the basis of normative energy and nutrient requirements for the  Bangladeshi population,plans for sustainable diets at affordable cost with dietary  guidelines for a healthier nation was prepared and shared.Central to these issues are reliable food and nutrient composition data and Food Composition Tables(FCT) the updates for which were provided.Information on safety of foods based on a total diet study was shared to provide insights for agricultural planning,diet and nutritional assessment,food safety regulations  and consumer protection.

2.Food Access Thematic Area:

This theme was consisted of four studies,three of which related to social safety-nets.With the ambition to improve the effectiveness of safety-net programs,one of the studies presented results and policy recommendations on targeting and prioritization issues.Another study presented results on how social safety -nets could assist poor household to respond to climate change and a third study presented how safety-nets could promote productive outcomes for lasting poverty elimination and food security.The fourth study under this thematic area presented fresh evidence on urbanization and its implications for food security.

3.Food Availability Thematic Area:

There were eight studies in this thematic area.Three of them comprised food production inputs of land,ground water and credit which examined their trends,sustainability and accessibility. The study on land presented interesting results on land decline and or increase based on satellite imagery. This study created much interaction among the participants since it was one of the first such studies in Bangladesh.

Two studies investigated the structure and performance of key food markets of rice,and fruit ad vegetables.The rice market study results included an assessment of new milling technology.

Further three studies examined in depth profitability of farming across a range of crops,the trends and drivers in diversification of food production,and how the public rice procurement system influenced farming incentives.

All the studies presented new evidences based on data collected through purposefully designed household and farm surveys.


Detailed Program of The Workshop on Research to Inform Food and Nutrition Security Policies

Date        : 3-4 July 2013 (Wednesday and Thursday)

Venue     :Ruposhi Bangla Hotel,Ball Room,1 Minto Road,Dhaka 1000

Day 1      Wednesday   3 July 2013

0820-0920 Arrival and Registration

0920-0930 Guests take their seats

Session I     Inaugural Session

Chief Guest  :Dr.Muhammad Abdur Razzaque MP

Hon’ble  Minister,Ministry of Food

Chair             :Mr.Abdul Awal Hawlader ,Acting Secretary,Ministry of Food

Rapporteurs:Ms. Lalita Bhattacharjee,NFPCSP-FAO and

Mr.Mahbubur Rahman,FPMU

0930-0940 Welcome Address by Mr. Naser Farid

Director General,FPMU,Ministry of Food

0940-1000 Workshop Objectives by Mr. Ciro Fiorillo

Chief Technical Adviser,NFPCSP-FAO

1000-1010   Address by Guest of Honor,Mr.Kostas G.Stamoulis

Director ESA Division,FAO,Italy

1010-1020  Address by Guest of Honor,Mr.Philippe Jacques

Head of Cooperation,Delegation of the European Union to Bangladesh

1020-1030 Address by Guest of Honor,Mr.Richard Greene

Mission Director,USAID,Dhaka,Bangladesh

1030-1040 Address by Special Guest,Mr.Mike Robson

FAO Representative in Bangladesh

1040-1050 Address by the  Chair,Mr.Abdul Awal Hawlader ,Acting Secretary,Ministry of Food

1050-1115 Address by the Chief Guest,Dr.Muhammad Abdur Razzaque MP

Hon’ble  Minister,Ministry of Food

1115-1200 Tea/Coffee

Session II Food Availability:Land,Water,Credit,Profitabilty

  Chair:Prof Dr.M.A.Sattar Mandal,Member (Agriculture,Water Resources and Rural Institutions),Planning Commission,Bangladesh

Rapporteurs:Ms.Merzouk Quraishia,NFPCSP-FAO and

Mr.M.Ismail Miah,FPMU

1200-1215 Trends in the availability of agricultural land in Bangladesh

Mr.Md.Nazmul Hassan,Soil Resources Development Institute

1215-1220 Discussant-Mr.Shahin Yaqub,NFPCSP-FAO

1220-1230 General Discussion

1230-1245 The role of credit in food production and food security in Bangladesh

Prof.Dr.Bazlul Haque Khondker,Bureau of Economic Research,University of Dhaka

1245-1250 Discussant-Mr.M.Shahe Alam,NFPCSP-FAO

1250-1300 General Discussion

1300-1400 Prayer and Lunch

1400-1415 Sustainability of groundwater use for irrigation in North West Bangladesh

Dr.Nepal C.Dey,BRAC

1415-1420 Discussant-Mr.Rezaul Karim Talukder,NFPCSP-FAO

1420-1430 General Discussion

1430-1445  Financial and economic profitability of selected agricultural crops in Bangladesh

Prof.Dr.Mizanul H.Kajal ,Sher-e-Bangla Agricultural University

1445-1450  Discussant-Mr.Rezaul Karim Talukder,NFPCSP-FAO

1450-1500 General Discussion

1500-1510 Remarks from the Chair


Session III  Access to Food:Safety-net and Migration

Chair:Prof.Donato Romano,

Department of Economics and Management,

Universita Degli Studi Firenze,Italy


Rapporteurs:Ms.Merzouk Quraishia,NFPCSP-FAO and

Mr.M.Abul Hashem,FPMU

1510-1525 Improving the targeting effectiveness of social safety-nets in Bangladesh

Prof.Dr.Abul Barkat,Manob Sakti Unnayan Kendra

1525-1530 Discussant-Mr.Shahin Yaqub,NFPCSP-FAO

1530 -1545 General Discussion


1545 -1600 Adapting social safety-net programs to climate change shocks: issues and options for Bangladesh

Prof.Dr.M.A.Awal,Department of Crop Botany,Bangladesh Agricultural University

1600-1605 Discussant-Mr.Shahin Yaqub,NFPCSP-FAO

1605- -1615 General Discussion


1615-1630 Rural-urban migration and its implications for food security in  Bangladesh

Prof.Dr.Md.Zakir Hossain,Department of Statistics,

Shahjalal  University of Science and Technology

1630-1635   Discussant-Mr.M.Shahe Alam,NFPCSP-FAO

1635-1650  General Discussion


1650-1705 Social safety-nets and productive outcomes :evidence and implications for Bangladesh

Dr.Ismat Ara Begum,Department of Agricultural Economics,

Faculty of Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology

Bangladesh Agricultural University

1705–1710 Discussant-Mr.Rezaul Karim Talukder,NFPCSP-FAO

1710-1725  General Discussion

1725-1735 Remarks from the Chair

1735-1750 Tea/Coffee


Day 2      Thursday   4 July 2013

Session IV Nutrition :Food Composition and Dietary Intake


Chairman,Centre for Women and Child Health

Rapporteurs:Mr.M.A.Mannan,NFPCSP-FAO and

Mr.M.Faruq Al Banna,FPMU

0900-0915 Food composition tables for Bangladesh

Prof.Dr.Nazma Shaheen,Centre for Advanced Research and Studies,

University of Dhaka

0915-0920 Discussant -Ms. Lalita Bhattacharjee,NFPCSP-FAO

0920-0930  General Discussion


0930-0945 Development of a complementary feeding manual for Bangladesh

Dr.A.K.M.Iqbal Kabir,Bangladesh Breastfeeding Foundation(BBF)

0945-0950 Discussant -Mr.M.A.Mannan,NFPCSP-FAO

0950-1000  General Discussion


1000-1015 Desirable dietary pattern for Bangladesh

Dr.Quamrun Nahar,BIRDEM


1015-1020 Discussant -Ms. Lalita Bhattacharjee,NFPCSP-FAO

1020-1030  General Discussion


1030-1045 Consumption of unsafe foods:heavy metal,mineral and trace element contamination

Prof.Dr.Md.Rafiqul Islam,Department of Soil Science,

Bangladesh Agricultural University

1045-1050 Discussant -Mr.M.A.Mannan,NFPCSP-FAO

1050-1100  General Discussion

1100-1115 Remarks from the Chair

1115-1130 Tea/Coffee


Session V  Food Availability : Diversification,Efficiency and Support to Farmers

Chair:Mr. Ciro Fiorillo

Chief Technical Adviser,NFPCSP-FAO   and

Prof.Dr.Shamsul Alam,Member(General Economics Division)

Planning Commission,Bangladesh

1130-1145 Improving the marketing systems of fruits and vegetables in Bangladesh

Prof.Dr.Md.Kamrul Hassan,Department of Horticulture,

Bangladesh Agricultural University

1145-1150 Discussant -Mr.Shaikh Abdus Sabur,NFPCSP-FAO

1150-1200  General Discussion


1200-1215 Policy options for supporting agricultural diversification in Bangladesh

Dr.Md.Monayem Miah,Agricultural Economics Division,

Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute

1215-1220   Discussant-Mr.M.Shahe Alam,NFPCSP-FAO

1220-1230  General Discussion


1230-1245 Structure,conduct and performance of the rice market and the impact of technological changes in milling.

Prof.Dr.Shankar K.Raha,Institute of Agribusiness and Development Studies,Bangladesh Agricultural University

1245-1250 Discussant -Mr.Shaikh Abdus Sabur,NFPCSP-FAO

1250-1300  General Discussion


1300-1315 Effectiveness of Bangladesh’s rice procurement system and possible alternatives:supporting farmers’ income and sustaining production incentives

Dr.Mohammad Jahangir Alam,Department of Agribusiness and Marketing ,

Faculty of Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology,

Bangladesh Agricultural University

1315–1320 Discussant -Mr.Shaikh Abdus Sabur,NFPCSP-FAO

1320-1330  General Discussion

1330-1345  Remarks from the Chair

1345-1400 Closing Remarks by Mr. Naser Farid

Director General,FPMU,Ministry of Food

1400-1430 Prayer and Lunch




















Training on Heavy Metal and Pesticide Residue Detection in Foods by the FAO Food Safety Project in Bangladesh :Dr.Syed Md.Zainul Abedin

The FAO Food Safety Project of Bangladesh has  completed refurbishment of 7000 sq. ft. of laboratory space on the premises of the Institute of Public Health (IPH), Mohakhali situated in Dhaka,the capital of Bangladesh.The facilities has been earmarked  as the National Food Safety Laboratory (NFSL). To develop the necessary technical capacity for this laboratory, analysts assigned by the IPH have been trained both in Bangladesh and abroad through an intensive capacity building programme. As part of this skill and capability enhancement activity, two expert trainers spent 5 concentrated weeks in training the analysts on the detection of heavy metals and pesticide residues in food.The event was held from May 26 to June 30, 2012.
Dr. Amina Sekaly from Toronto, Canada, international expert in testing for heavy metals in food and by Dr. Anoop Krishnan from the Export Inspection Agency Laboratory, Mumbai, India in the detection of pesticide residues in food imparted the training.  The analysts were taught the fundamental principles of spectroscopy and given detailed presentations on sophisticated laboratory equipment used in food analysis such as  Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer (AAS),  Gas Chromatograph (GC),  GC coupled with Mass Spectrophotometer (GC-MS) and the High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC). They were also provided training on the use and operation of the High Performance Thin Layer Chromatograph (HPTLC) by engineers from the company (CAMAG). The analysts also performed calibration tests for basic laboratory instruments and were trained in the measurement of uncertainty.

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The two international experts also trained on laboratory safety and good laboratory practices to encourage and emphasize the development of a strong and safe analytical mindset among the analysts who participated in the training. This contribution was particularly significant as this group is expected to be the core start up team of the NFSL. The training activities were overseen by Dr. Sridhar Dharmapuri, International Food Analysis Expert and Dr. Ashis Ratan Sen, National Food Analysis Advisor, FAO Food safety Project. Dr. Md. Abdur Razzak Miah, Deputy Director of the IPH attended many of the training sessions on behalf of the IPH management.
The feedbacks from the participants were extremely positive. They expressed their appreciation for the two experts for assisting them  in enhancing analytical skills and providing insights into the operation of an efficient food safety laboratory. Importantly, the analysts imbibed a lot of confidence from the training program. They anticipated that this will translate into the generation of reliable food safety data as the National Food Safety Laboratory in Dhaka becomes operational.
The FAO Food Safety Project warmly thanked Dr. Sekaly and Dr. Krishnan for conducting a wide-ranging and valuable training programme which may be considered as an important milestone towards the food safety undertaking of Bangladesh.

The news item has been prepared on the basis of report published at the link:http://www.bdfoodsafety.org/inner.php?SubMenuId=6&DetailsId=69 of the Project entitled, ‘Improving Food Safety in Bangladesh’.

The  project is jointly supported by the Government of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations(FAO-UN) and Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh.

You may visit the website of the project: http://bdfoodsafety.org/ to learn its activities.

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Sahara India Pariwar Launches Venture in Real Estate Sector of Bangladesh-By Syed Zainul Abedin

The housing or real estate sector of Bangladesh is embracing a new member with the advent of the famous Sahara India Pariwar.The news has been circulated in the Bangladeshi media amidst surprise,hopes and resentment among different groups of peoples and business communities.The common people who are frustrated by the monopoly and deceptive roles of the local housing and development companies seem to welcome foreign companies who will provide services with transparency.It was felt from the reactions ventilated in the local media that people want a fair competition and standard in the housing sector.It is not yet clear how the Sahara Pariwar will operate their business in Bangladesh and what regulatory measures they have to encounter here.However,in the absence of transparent housing policy in Bangladesh and extreme profiteering culture the general public look for a modest solution in the housing and real eatate sector.Only time may say what blessing Sahara Pariwar has to offer for the people of Bangladesh.

Following news item has been taken from the website: http://english.samaylive.com

Though the company is very famous in India,it is not yet known widely in Bangladesh.Hence I like to provide the link of the website of Sahara Pariwar which may be a great resource for the intersted people to discover its programmes and services.I invite you to visit the following link :http://www.sahara.in/index.html

Sahara India Pariwar, a major business conglomerate in India has on Friday announced its entry into the housing & infrastructure sector of Bangladesh.

The group’s, newly formed Bangladesh based company ‘Sahara Matribhumi Unnayan Corporation Limited’ has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Ministry of Housing and Public Works of Bangladesh Government, to invest in the development of housing industry in Bangladesh.

‘Sahara Matribhumi Unnayan Corporation Limited’ will conceptualize, design and plan a new city near Dhaka, i.e. Notun Dhaka (New Dhaka) and will build affordable housing for low income groups with integHousing Finance support for majority applicants. The newly formed company will also conceptualize, design and plan various integrated satellite townships under the Ministry of Housing & Public Works (MOPW) of the Government of Bangladesh.

The MoU was signed by Saharasri Subrata Roy Sahara, Managing Worker & Chairman, Sahara India Pariwar and Mr. Nurul Huda, Chairman, Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha (RAJUK). The event was witnessed by Mr. Abdul Mannan Khan, State Minister for Housing & Public Works and other top bureaucrats, politicians and senior officials of the Bangladesh Government.

The eventful 4 day visit of Saharasri Subrata Roy Sahara was concluded with positive notes after having meetings with Dr. S. A. Samad, Executive Chairman of Board of Investments (BOI), Dr. Atiur Rahman, Governor of Central Bank and the Shri Hasan Mahmood Khondokar, Inspector General (IG) of Bangladesh Police.

Hon’ble Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina had also met Saharasri Subrata Roy Sahara to discuss about the intended projects and further opportunities in Bangladesh.
Saharasri Subrata Roy Sahara has urged the Government of Bangladesh to ease conditions about availability of housing finance and to remove the difference in tax rates between listed and unlisted companies in Bangladesh. The newly formed company ‘Sahara Matribhumi Unnayan Corporation Limited’s plans are to build integrated and satellite townships which will be heavily intensive on infrastructure unlike regional real estate projects. He requested both Dr. S. A. Samad and Dr. Atiur Rahman that a classification of a section be created midway between housing and infrastructure so that the taxation policy is relooked at Bangladesh.

Speaking at the press conference, Saharasri Subrata Roy Sahara, Managing Worker & Chairman, Sahara India Pariwar, said, “I am extremely proud to extend our business interests in Bangladesh. The Government of Bangladesh and its people have provided us a wonderful support and this in effect will help us to contribute towards the development of Bangladesh.”


A press conference of the REHAB and BLDA has taken place yesterday in response to the MOU between Ministry of Housing and Public Works of Bangladesh Government and Sahara Matribhumi Unnayan Corporation Limited.
The report of the press confrence has been published in media today.The report published in online
newspaper,BANGLANEWS24.COM has been presented here for the knowledge of interested readers.You can also read the news item at the following link:

REHAB-BLDA demand equal opportunity

Real Estate and Housing Association of Bangladesh (REHAB) and Bangladesh Land Developers’ Association (BLDA) came up with the plea in a joint press conference this morning at a city hotel.

BLDA President and Bashundhara Group Chairman Ahmed Akbar Sobhan said, “As a businessman, I welcome foreign investment but first of all, we have to protect the interests of local companies when we have failed to handover thousands of flats due to lack of gas and electricity.”

He said, “The government should provide similar opportunities for the local companies like the foreign one. Thus a fair and same level competition will be created.”

The local companies are capable in investing more than the foreign investors, he added.

The BLDA president said, “For the foreign investors, several lakh acres of land are available in different areas in the country, including Nijhum Deep and Mirsarai rather than Dhaka.”

The top businessman of the country said, “If the government signs MoU with the foreign investors over one lakh acres land requisition, they should sign another MoU of two lakh land requisition for REHAB and BLDA.”

The BLDA president stated that the government acquires land at Tk 100,000 or Tk 200,000 per bigha while BLDA has to acquire the same land at Tk 50 lakh to Tk 2 crore. “The farmers become deprived if government acquires land which could trigger unrest,” the newsmen were told.

The difference between the price of governmental requisition and private will create an uneven competition. “That’s why Public Private Partnership (PPP) is important to secure the interest of the farmers by generating balanced competition,” he said.

“I believe that the government would not do anything to infringe the interest of the country. The incumbent democratic government repeatedly said that they would provide us land and we would develop that,” he said.

Regarding the Sahara boss Subrata Roy’s allegation of building Dhaka as the jungle of cement, he said, land is the main hindrance of urbanizing Dhaka. It happened due to the scarcity of land or lack of urban plan.

“If the government gives us land, we can build up better city than the foreign investors,” he claimed.

Regarding Rajuk, he said this organization doesn’t follow its own urbanization strategy rather filling the ditches. “Journalists should be careful in this regard,” he said.

At the press conference, REHAB President Nasrul Hamid Bipu read out a written speech.

He said, “We want to talk about foreign investment rather than a particular company. Like previous, I am urging the government to provide us land.”

Nasrul also told journalists that it is a crucial moment of the housing industry as 70 percent investment has been already stopped. “Without government assistance it will be difficult to survive in this sector,” he said.

BLDA general secretary Mostafa Kamal Mohiuddin, REHAB joint secretary Major (retd) Jamshed Hasan PSC, Arshi Hayder, chairman of REHAB Land Standing Committee M Aktar Biswas, M Anisuzzaman Bhuiyan Rana and managing director of Building Technology and Ideas FR Khan were among others present at the press meet.