Int’l conference on Globalization held at BRAC University

Economics and Social Sciences (ESS) Department of BRAC University organized a day-long conference on “Globalization and Trade: Prospects and Challenges for South Asia” on Friday.

The conference brought together some of the active researchers in the field from universities, think-tank institutes, and policy makers to brainstorm trade policy issues and challenges from globalization to regional economies. Shamim Shakur from MasseyUniversity in New Zealand, currently Visiting Professor of Economics, and Farzana Munshi, Associate Professor, both from ESS at BRACUniversity led proceedings of day as conference conveners.

ESS 3Prof Syed M Hashemi, Head of ESS department at BRACUniversity welcomed delegates in the morning. A total of 14 research papers were presented in four thematic sessions, namely: (1) Globalization and Trade in South Asia, (2) Globalization and Income Inequality, (3) Financial Aspects of Globalization and Trade and (4) Trade Policy in Bangladesh. The sessions were chaired, respectively, by Dr Debapriya Bhattacharya, (CPD), Dr Quazi Shahabuddin, (BIDS), Dr. Mustafa K Mujeri, (BIDS) and Professor Fahad Khalil (University of Washington, USA). Each paper was critically appraised by a dedicated discussant following its presentation. All papers were selected by a blind-review process from a larger pool of economics researchers from Bangladesh, India, Sikkim, United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

In his keynote presentation delivered in the afternoon, renowned economist and former adviser to the caretaker government Professor Wahiduddin Mahmud emphasized cooperation among South Asian countries towards making a global trade agreement. Dr Shamim Shakur from MasseyUniversity and BRACUniversity, demonstrated benefits from increased regional trade among South Asian countries in the absence a successful global trade agreement since WTO’s inception in 1995.

The conference ended with a lively panel discussion session on the conference theme, chaired by Dr Mustafa K Mujeri, Director General of Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies. Other members of the distinguished panel included Professor Ainul Nishat, Vice-Chancellor of BRAC University, Dr Mozibur Rahman, Chief Executive Officer at Bangladesh Foreign Trade Institute and Professor Mustafizur Rahman, Executive Director, Centre for Policy Dialogue attended the conference.