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Rising wages in Bangladesh:


  • Zhang, Xiaobo
  • Rashid, Shahidur
  • Ahmad, Kaikaus
  • Mueller, Valerie
  • Lee, Hak Lim
  • Lemma, Solomon
  • Belal, Saika
  • Ahmed, Akhter U.


Using data from multiple sources, we show that in Bangladesh, the increase in real wages, particularly female wages, has accelerated since the late 2000s, suggesting that the Lewis turning point (the point at which the labor market starts to shift in favor of workers) has arrived in Bangladesh. Rising wages are likely a result of a combination of more ample job opportunities in the nonfarm sector, especially in the manufacturing sector for females, and a greater amount of remittances, primarily from male workers overseas. Since human capital is the most important asset for the poor, the escalation in real wages has boosted the poor’s earnings, thereby reducing their likelihood of being poor.

Suggested Citation

  • Zhang, Xiaobo & Rashid, Shahidur & Ahmad, Kaikaus & Mueller, Valerie & Lee, Hak Lim & Lemma, Solomon & Belal, Saika & Ahmed, Akhter U., 2013. "Rising wages in Bangladesh:," IFPRI discussion papers 1249, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  • Handle: RePEc:fpr:ifprid:1249

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    Cited by:

    1. Headey, Derek D. & Hoddinott, John, 2016. "Agriculture, nutrition and the green revolution in Bangladesh," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 149(C), pages 122-131.
    2. Belton, Ben & van Asseldonk, Imke Josepha Mariana & Thilsted, Shakuntala Haraksingh, 2014. "Faltering fisheries and ascendant aquaculture: Implications for food and nutrition security in Bangladesh," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 77-87.
    3. Rashid, Shahidur & Tefera, Nigussie & Lemma, Solomon & Yunus, Mohammad, 2014. "Population pressure and livelihood dynamics: Panel evidence from Bangladesh," IFPRI discussion papers 1326, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    4. Katsushi S. Imai & Bilal Malaeb, 2016. "Asia's Rural-urban Disparity in the Context of Growing Inequality," Discussion Paper Series DP2016-29, Research Institute for Economics & Business Administration, Kobe University.
    5. Clarke, Daniel J. & Kumar, Neha, 2015. "Microinsurance decisions: Gendered evidence from rural Bangladesh:," IFPRI discussion papers 1465, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    6. Agha Ali Akram & Shyamal Chowdhury & Ahmed Mushfiq Mobarak, 2017. "Effects of Emigration on Rural Labor Markets," NBER Working Papers 23929, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Aiko Kikkawa & Keijiro Otsuka, 2016. "The Changing Landscape of International Migration : Evidence from Rural Households in Bangladesh, 2000-2014," GRIPS Discussion Papers 16-13, National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies.
    8. Wiggins, Steve & Keats, Sharada, 2015. "Rural Wages in Asia," 2015 Conference, August 9-14, 2015, Milan, Italy 212615, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    9. repec:ris:badest:0781 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Derek D Headey, 2018. "Food Prices and Poverty," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 32(3), pages 676-691.
    11. Headey, Derek D., 2014. "Food prices and poverty reduction in the long run:," IFPRI discussion papers 1331, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    12. Toufique, Kazi Ali & Belton, Ben, 2014. "Is Aquaculture Pro-Poor? Empirical Evidence of Impacts on Fish Consumption in Bangladesh," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 609-620.

    More about this item


    Wages; wage rates; Lewis turning point; Labor market; Industrialization; Gender; Women; Remittances;

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