Population as a growth engine

Posted on March 10, 2010  /  0 Comments

The snap shot age distribution in a population can take three basic shapes. Pyramid is the most common in animal world where reaching the ripe old age is rare. Advances in medicine and economy have changed that in human societies. The pot shape is the best (till is lasts) as the workforce is larger with respect to the number of dependents (old and children). An urn, with a wider top and a bottom is the worst.

Starting in around 2013, points Rohan Samarajiva, Bangladesh will enter the best period for realising the demographic dividend, with the lowest levels of combined child and adult dependency in its history. It will be the closest to the ‘pot’ shape. This golden period will last until around 2033 when the more burdensome adult dependency (ratio of adults over 65 years of age to the working population aged 15-65 years) reaches significant proportions.

What does this mean to Bangladesh? How can that be exploited?

It is here that information and communication technologies can make a difference. In the past, only agricultural and manufacturing goods could be exported. Now, thanks to telecom, even services can be exported. Bangladesh is currently said to have 30,000 persons working in the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) industry.

In 2005-06, it was estimated that India created 1.3 million direct jobs in the IT and IT enabled services sector, with another 3 million jobs created indirectly, to serve the industry. The proportionate numbers for Bangladesh, which has one-seventh the Indian population will be 182,000 direct jobs and 421,000 indirect jobs.

Read the full article in The Daily Star.

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