Students, rickshaw-pullers and labourers faced the worst financial hardship during pandemic whereas government employees and teachers were least impacted by it, reported Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS).
Using random sampling method, BBS conducted a rapid phone panel survey on 2,040 mobile users of four mobile operators between September 13 and 19.
According to the report, 85.71 percent students, 85.11 rickshaw-pullers and van-pullers, and 84.16 percent labourers had faced financial hardship during the pandemic.
Besides, 9.76 percent government employees, 32.26 percent teachers and 57.43 percent private job holders had to experience financial difficulties.
Around 46.22 percent people who were going through financial hardship used their previous savings for survival whereas 43.11 sought assistance from family members, the report added.
The survey also found out that unemployment rate in the country rose to 23 percent in July and went down to around 4 percent in September as the Covid-19 situation improved.
The report — Covid-19 Bangladesh: Perception Study on Impact on Livelihood — was presented in the Ecnec meeting yesterday.
Planning Minister MA Mannan disclosed the report findings to journalists after the meeting.
He said the entire world witnessed negative impact of the virus and Bangladesh was no exception.
However, the country’s economy was turning around now, he added.
This survey was conducted following the direction of the Prime Minister’s Officer. This was the very first report of BBS that was conducted using mobile phones and the samples were collected from both rural and urban areas, he said.
According to the report, people’s monthly income dropped by around 20 percent while expenditures also decreased by 6.14 percent during the pandemic.
In March, the average monthly income was Tk 19,425 and in August it came down to Tk 15,892 whereas the monthy expenditure in March was Tk 15,403 and it dropped to Tk 14,119 in August, the report mentioned.
The report mentioned that around two thirds of the families in the country faced various problems between April and July. Around 21.33 percent households — one fifth families — received government assistance or reliefs, it added.
Another such report, conducted by the World Bank, however, suggested that around 68 percent people were unemployed during the pandemic.
The World Bank report was carried out in two phases — one after the pandemic began and the second one from June 10 to July 10.
According to the World Bank report, the rate of the job loss was 76 percent in the capital while it was 59 percent in the port city.