WHAT AFFECTS URBAN DEVELOPMENT IN BANGLADESH?

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  • ABSTRACT

    Urban growth has been consistently higher than rural growth for the past couple of decades in Bangladesh. In general, urbanization rate becomes higher than before but some discrepancy among cities, some big cities like Dhaka and Chittagong showed very high population density. However, the slow growth of agriculture is pushing, and the possibility of jobs and better income opportunity in the cities is pulling. This study provides an overview using different measures to capture the factors of urban development in Bangladesh. It also attempts to seek an answer, in the contemporary Bangladeshi context, to the question of what factors significantly affect on urban development There are 64 districts in the administrative tires in Bangladesh. This study uses data from all 64 districts in Bangladesh to look at the factors that affect urbanization with using SPSS and STATA. It also reflects a comprehensive look at understanding some core factors in details of urban development in Bangladesh. In particular, this study shows vendor, transportation and garments industry have very high relationship with population density, also statistically significant. But agriculture industry, manufacture industry and length of road show negative relationship with population density, also statistically significant. Despite rapid population growth, Bangladesh is not able to provide enough infrastructures like road due to some limitations. In addition, relationship between population density and construction show negative sign because population moves to cities without having enough living opportunity. However, this relationship is not significant statistically.


    방글라데시 도시화율은 개발국에 비해 아직도 낮은 약 30% 수준을 보이고 있지만, 도시인구밀도 변화의 양상을 보면 전반적으로 급속한 성장을 보이고 있다. 하지만 도시화율은 도시 간에 큰 격차를 보이고 있으며 Dhaka 또는 Chittagong 같은 대도시의 도시인구밀도가 크게 증가하고 있다. 농업부문의 압출요인과 고용 및 소득과 같은 도시의 흡인 요인이 동시에 도시화에 기여하고 있다. 본 논문은 도시발전에 미치는 영향요인을 밝혀내기 위하여 방글라데시 도시를 사례로 통계분석을 시도하였다. 기존의 논의된 요인들 중 어떤 요인이 특히 방글라데시 상황에서 중요한가에 대한 해답을 주려고 하였다. 방글라데시 도시 내 64개 구역을 분석단위로 1991년과 2001년 두 기간의 각 영향 요인들에 대한 STATA 패널 통계분석을 시도하였다. 도시발전에 미치는 경제적, 사회적, 공공인프라적 요인들을 도시인구밀도를 중심으로 영향을 분석하였다. 도시발전 요인 중, 특히 노점상, 교통, 의류산업과 같은 요인이 인구밀도와 높은 상관관계를 보였으며 통계적으로도 유의미한 것으로 나타났다. 하지만 농업적 요인은 인구밀도와 직접적 관계가 없게 나타났다. 상수도 및 공무원 수는 인구밀도와 약하지만 상관관계를 보였으며 통계적으로도 유의미하게 나타났다. 건설업은 인구밀도와 상관관계를 보이지 않으며 통계적으로도 유의미하지 않게 나타났다. 하지만 도로면적은 도시발전과 반비례관계를 보였으며 통계적으로도 유의한 것으로 나타났다. 급속히 증가하는 도시인구에 비해 예산상 제약으로 인해 도로 인프라는 비례하여 증가하지 못하는 것으로 보인다.

  • KEYWORD

    Urbanization , Urban Development , Urbanization History , Development Factors

  • I. INTRODUCTION

    Urbanization is the process of shifting population from rural to urban areas. Some people come from rural areas to urban areas temporarily to exchange goods or information while others move permanently for new opportunity and better lives. Today, more than half of the world population resides in urban areas. Urbanization supposedly facilitates economic growth by increasing modern sector output in developing countries. In Asia, urbanization involves around 44 million people being added to the populations of cities every year.

    To put this in perspective, each day a further 120,000 people are added to the populations of Asian cities. In addition, urbanization in Asia is associated with social, economic, political, and environmental transformations of unprecedented proportions. These transformations affecting the most populous countries like China, India, and Bangladesh are redefining the global economy, global environmental issues, and the geopolitical landscape (ADB, 2006). There are many gigantic metropolitan areas like Tokyo, Seoul, Shanghai, Mumbai, Beijing, Calcutta, Jakarta, Karachi, Delhi, Manila, and Dhaka in Asia.

    However, an urbanized region in countries like Bangladesh is a contiguous region that is thickly populated and mainly the cause of migration is driven by development factors. As the agricultural sector does not have enough scope so the poverty and unemployment always push the rural people to change their residence to the cities. Majority of the migrants comparatively can able to improve their livelihoods in the city. They also contribute significantly to the economic growth and gain higher wages from higher productivity areas. The urbanization process in Bangladesh has taken place mostly during the last couple of decades.

    The objective of the study is to identify the factors that are affecting urban development in Bangladesh. In view of this, secondary data were collected from various agencies of government in Bangladesh, including the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS). In addition, relevant data were also collected from NGOs, and other reliable sources. The time series data were collected covering a period of year in 1991 and 2001to evaluate the factors of urban development in Bangladesh. SPSS and STATA were used for data analysis in order to make the study more informative, analytical and useful for the users.

    However, few papers have been published on urbanization in Bangladesh. Most of these studies have focused on specific case studies of urbanization and urban development with little reference to cross country lessons. As a result, this study provides an overview of what factors affecting urban development in Bangladesh. Further, this study also considers a variety of measures of urban development that measures are most suitable in the case of Bangladesh.

    II. LITERATURE REVIEW

    Girardet (1996) stated that urban development is associated with higher incomes, improved health, higher literacy, improved quality of life and other benefits. The main forces driving urbanization today are the shifting of jobs from agriculture to industry and the concentration of economic opportunities in urban areas. However, a major cause of urbanization in Bangladesh is that the agriculture sector is no longer able to absorb the surplus labor force entering the economy every year. Inability of the agriculture sector to provide sufficient employment or sufficiently high household incomes to cope with a growing number of dependents can encourage people to seek employment outside agriculture. In the case of Bangladesh the rural to urban migration has contributed to more than 40 percent of the change in urban population (Khan & Weiss, 2007). Sarker (2005) also put forward this theory and stated that public expenditure for agriculture has been declining both in absolute and relative terms in Bangladesh.

    Sassen (1996) found the largest cities are often global centers of command and control and concentrated industry. Here stated business and industry play an important role in the urbanization process. In Bangladesh, the actual development in the huge export oriented readymade garments industries sector during the eighties and nineties shows an overwhelming concentration in city (Sarker, 2005). Islam (2012) also pointed that the recent rapid urbanization in Bangladesh, particularly in Dhaka and Chittagong is the opportunity for people to be engaged in formal industrial sector employment, primarily in the garment or manufacturing sector.

    The lure of employment opportunities existing in cities is another reason for urban migration (Cho & Ha, 2008: 143-163). Most of the industrial establishments and businesses as well as services are concentrated in the largest cities in Bangladesh (Zaman, Alam & Islam, 2010). After the formation of Bangladesh in 1971, form the development of new centers of trade, commerce, industry and administration in the Dhaka region also responsible for urbanization (Islam, 1996). Today the largest and fastest growing cities are in developing countries, because of the new urban and industrial development. In developing countries industrial growth in urban areas offers employment and trading opportunities for rural people (Bilsborrow, 1998). It is generally assumed that earlier variations in the level of urbanization were determined predominantly by administrative importance and industrial legacy of the regions in Bangladesh (Islam, 2012). Also Sarker (2005) stated a disproportionately large concentration of industrial and various public sector investments have been made in the city area. In several other industrial sectors too, Dhaka has more than 80 percent of the national enterprises.

    High industrial wages in urban areas are one of the biggest attractions for rural people. People continue to migrate to cities as long as they expect urban wages to exceed their current rural wages. Employment opportunities, higher incomes, freedom from oppressive lifestyle, access to better health care and education, are the bright lights for rural people. One of the main reasons for people to move to the urban areas is that the situation in the rural areas is very difficult with the income level they have and it is not possible to survive (Girardet, 1996 & Sajor, 2001). The modernization theory also put forward and the industrial employment attracts people from rural to urban areas. In the urban areas people work in modern sector in the occupations that facilitate national economic expansion. This means that the agricultural economics is changing to a new nonagricultural economy (Gugler, 1997).

    Urban development is associated with higher incomes, improved health, higher literacy, improved quality of life and other benefits (South Asia Report, 2001). In addition to economic activity, major demographic forces determine urban growth. Some of the chief forces driving urbanization today are the shifting of jobs from agriculture to industry and the concentration of economic opportunities in urban areas. This report may also provide answer in the contemporary Bangladeshi context, to the question of what measures drives urbanization. Meanwhile, Cohen (2006) stated that over the last twenty years many urban areas have experienced dramatic growth, as a result the economy have been transformed in urban areas by technological and political change.

    Historically, most migration move from rural to urban areas or to the cities for non agricultural work (James and Chowdhury, 2004). Lee & Hasan (2013) stated that urban development is arguably the most fundamental factors in Bangladeshi economic development. Major industrial activities and auxiliary business services are concentrated in the largest cities especially in Dhaka. Lee, Tao & Anderson, (2012) asserted that the city is marked by heterogeneity in terms of education, jobs, income, and lifestyle. In 1993, Brookfield & Byron pointed that transportation is the biggest question of rural to urban movement. Advances in transportation, by easing rural access to external markets, can relax the housing problem in the cities. Meng (2006) also stresses transportation also affects on urban development.

    Urban residents typically benefit from better forms of education and improve health care (Orum, 2011). Urban development also causes social development in terms of higher literacy rates, improvement in the quality of education and better health indicators (Islam, 2012) Administrative headquarters and civil employments, international businesses are all largely concentrated in city. Educational and research activities are also concentrated in the urban area in Bangladesh (Sarker, 2005).

    III. HISTORY OF URBANIZATION IN BANGLADESH

    Europe and the Americas more than three quarters of the population are already urban dwellers, urban growth in the 21st century will take place predominantly in Asia. Bangladesh is no exception to this as urbanization is occurring at a rapid rate: at 4% the annual growth rate in urban areas is more than 2.5 times faster than in rural areas. By the early 1900s both Great Britain and the United States had become predominantly urbanized nations; since that time, urbanization has been occurring around the globe at a rapid rate. Today, almost 50 percent of the world's population lives in urban areas. Historically, urbanization has been driven by the concentration of investment and employment opportunities in urban areas. Productive activities in industry and services cluster in cities. By one estimate, 80 per cent of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP) is generated by urban areas. As cities attract businesses and jobs, they bring together both the human and the entrepreneurial resources to generate new ideas, innovations and increasingly productive uses of technology. Most of the 25 countries with the largest urban populations are highly urbanized, but eight have levels of urbanization ranging from 28% to 51% and they include some of the most populous countries in the world: China, India, Indonesia, Nigeria, Pakistan, and Bangladesh (UN, 2011).

    Bangladesh has a long urban history although its level of urbanization still remains low but currently experiencing rapid growth. Bangladesh’s urban population has been growing at a yearly average rate of 6 percent since independence, at a time when the national population growth was 2.2 percent. As a result, urban population has grown six fold, compared with a 70 percent increase in rural population (World Bank, 2007). As per recent UN data, approximately 25 percent of Bangladesh’s current population currently lives in urban areas. Of this urban population, more than half lives in the four largest cities: Dhaka, Chittagong, Khulna and Rajshahi. With a population of almost 16 million, Dhaka is the capital and largest city in Bangladesh. The population density is now believed to have reached around 34,000 people per square kilometer, making Dhaka amongst the most densely populated city in the world.

    However, the level of urbanization in Bangladesh has been low but it is urbanizing rapidly now. At the beginning of the last century, in 1901, only 2.43 percent of the total population of present Bangladesh areas of British India lived in urban areas. During the first half of the century urban population growth was almost static. In 1941, less than 4 percent of the population lived in urban centers; the total urban population was 1.54 million. Urbanization received impetus after 1947, when the Indian subcontinent became independent of the British rule and Bangladesh, then East Pakistan, earned a new political status (Islam, 2012). Since then a change has been observed in terms of the growth of urban population and also of urban centers.

    [

    ] Growth of National and Urban Population in Bangladesh, 1991 & 2001

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    The total urban population rose from 1.83 million in 1951 to about 2.64 million in 1961. The important factor responsible for this rapid growth was a large scale migration of Muslims from India after 1947, who mostly settled in urban areas. A phenomenal growth took place during the 1961 to 1974 period, the increase being as high as 137.6 percent. The growth rate was 6.7 percent per year during the period as against 3.7 percent per year in the previous decade. This rapid urban growth is largely due to migration of people from rural to urban areas. The rural push factors, caused by economic impoverishment following the liberation war in 1971 and environmental disasters in the following years contributed significantly. Rate of Natural growth of population was also quite high. In 1974, urban population increased to 8.9 percent from 5.2 percent in 1961. In 1981 this rose to 15.5 percent.

    The change during this period (1974-81) was 110.7 percent with annual growth rate of about 10 percent. Like the previous decade both migration and natural growth partially contributed to this growth. But the most important contributory factor for the 1974-81 periods was the redefinition of urban places. During the 1981 to 1991 period, a slower growth of urban population, 5.4 percent, has been observed compared with the previous decade. At about 20.0 percent level of urbanization the total urban population was 22.45 million in 1991 and that at 23.1 percent level, the total urban population rose to 28.6 million in 2001 (Islam, 2012). The 2011 census has been stated that total population 150.4 million. With the level of urbanization is 28 percent and the total urban population is 42 million.

    IV. ANALYSIS OF URBAN DEVELOPMENT

       1. DEFINITION & SOURCES OF DATA

    This study considers a variety of measures of urban development that measures are most suitable in the case of Bangladesh. The table shows the definition and sources of the variables.

    [

    ] Variables Definition & Sources

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       2. RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

    This study employs data from 64 districts from the years of 1991 and 2001 to determine the factors that were most closely associated with the urban development over this period. The objective of the study is to identify the factors that affect urban development in Bangladesh. In view of this, secondary data were collected from various agencies government in Bangladesh, including the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics. In addition, relevant data were also collected from NGOs, and other reliable sources. The time series data were collected covering a period of 1991 and 2001.

    This is done through SPSS and STATA for regression analysis. Thirteen factors are available to serve as independent variables to represent urbanization during these periods. These are agriculture industry, garments industry, manufacture industry, service industry, vendor, construction, public employee, length of road, drinking water, transportation, literacy rate, hospital bed and NGO. These variables changes over time as the urban development progress. However, population density is the dependent variable and it is measured through the number of inhabitants per square kilometer. In order to make this study more informative, analytical and useful these above variables are discussed which are most suitable for urban development in the case of Bangladesh.

       3. STATISTICAL ANALYSIS

    1) Descriptive Analysis

    Like many other Asian developing countries, an increasing share of population of Bangladesh migrates to urban centers in search for employment opportunities outside agriculture and into industrial enterprises or the services sector (Khan & Weiss, 2007). In Bangladesh urban sector contributed to more than 60 percent of the GDP in 2009. Urbanization also causes social development in terms of higher literacy rates, improvement in the quality of education and better health indicators.

    [

    ] Descriptive Statistics

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    Bangladesh has one of the highest population densities in the world. The above table shows that there have big differences of population density in Bangladesh. At the district level, the highest density is found in Dhaka (8,111 inhabitants / km2) and the lowest in Bandarban district (86 inhabitants / km2). Weaving and industry has also huge gap in Bangladesh, particularly in Dhaka and Chittagong, is the opportunity for young women to be engaged in manufacture industryl, primarily in the garment industry sector. However, public employee, length of road and transportation has also the same circumstances. Specially, some districts have not enough opportunity for job, road and transportation facilities because of having hill tracts area. Moreover, hospital bed and NGO has large differences because all districts are not equally developed in Bangladesh.

    2) Correlation Analysis

    The following correlation analysis has been done where population density as a dependent variable and agriculture industry, garments industry, manufacture industry, service industry, vendor, construction, public employee, length of road, drinking water, transportation, literacy rate, hospital bed and NGO all are as independent variable.

    The table 4 shows that there remains no positive relationship between population density and cultivation. Khan & Weiss (2007) also stated a major cause of urbanization in Bangladesh is that the agriculture sector is no longer able to absorb the surplus labor force entering the economy every year. Inability of the agriculture sector to provide sufficient employment or sufficiently high household incomes to cope with a growing number of dependents can encourage people to seek employment outside.

    [

    ] Correlation

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    However, service industry, construction, drinking water and vendor all measures have positive relation with population density in Bangladesh. James and Chowdhury (2004) stated historically, with a largely rural economy and little industrialization, most migration from rural to urban areas was men who went to the cities for temporary, non agricultural work. Moreover, transportation has strong relation with population density which is 0.836 and significant level is at 99%. In 1993, Brookfield & Byron also pointed that transportation is the biggest question of rural to urban movement. Advances in transportation, by easing rural access to external markets, can relax the housing problem in the cities. This theory is also applicable in case of Bangladesh because the above table shows that transportation has the highest strong relation with population density and highly significant.

    On the other hand, hospital bed, garments industry, service industry, NGO and public employee have also established the positive relation with population density in Bangladesh. Industrialization, which greatly improved urban productivity and it, is trigger urbanization. It is also a force that motivates people to move from rural to urban areas. Meanwhile, Girardet (1996) & Sajor (2001) focused on high industrial wages in urban areas are one of the biggest attractions for rural people. People will continue to migrate to cities as long as they expect urban wages to exceed their current rural wages. Employment opportunities, higher incomes, joining other rural refugees, freedom from oppressive lifestyle, access to better health care and education, are the bright lights for rural people. One of the main reasons for people to move to the urban areas is that the situation in the rural areas is very difficult. With the income level they have it is not possible to survive. Lee & Hasan (2013) also put forward the theory and mentioned urbanization is arguably the most fundamental factor in Bangladeshi economic development. Major industrial activities and auxiliary business services are concentrated in the largest cities especially in the Dhaka. Economic factors are therefore more influential for urbanization in Bangladesh. This district level data analysis also shows it is statistically significant and positive relation between population density and industry.

    3) Regression Analysis

    The regression has 124 observances and 62 groups. Time periods are 2. This panels did heteroskedastic and correlation test. The regression shows significant results for agriculture industry, garments industry, vendor, length of road, drinking water, transportation, literacy rate as well as hospital bed, though at the 99% significant level. on the other hand manufacture industry, service industry also show significant results at 95% (Table 5).

    [

    ] Regression Analysis

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    Urbanization has always been about building cities as hubs of economic activity which were associated realizing potential growth and opportunities. As Brookfield & Byron (1993) stated economic factors and employment are the main reasons for migration. Sometimes employment opportunities are non-existent in rural areas. In these cases moving to the city, even for very low salaries, is more profitable than staying in the countryside.

    The above analysis shows that agriculture has no positive relationship with population density. But it is statistically significant. It means cultivation is decreased when urbanization is increased. Khan & Weiss (2007) also pointed that a major cause of urbanization in Bangladesh is that the agriculture sector is no longer able to absorb the surplus labor force entering the economy every year. Inability of the agriculture sector to provide sufficient employment or sufficiently high household incomes to cope with a growing number of dependents can encourage people to seek employment outside agriculture. Moreover, Sarker (2005) put forward this theory and stated that public expenditure for agriculture has been declining both in absolute and relative terms in Bangladesh. However, garments industry has positive relationship with population density and it is also statistically significant. On the other hand, manufacture industry has negative relationship and statistically significant with population density in Bangladesh. So, manufacture industry is not enough and Bangladesh should take some necessary step for this. Moreover, service industry has no positive relationship with population density. It is statistically significant. Lee & Hasan (2013) stated that urbanization is arguably the most fundamental factors in Bangladeshi economic development. Major industrial activities and auxiliary business services are concentrated in the largest cities especially in the Dhaka. Here, advanced the idea of the role of production and the particular effect economy factors. In Bangladesh, vendor also has positive relationship with population density and statistically significant. Meanwhile, construction has no positive relationship with population density but statistically not significant. In addition, public employee and population density has positive relationship in case of Bangladesh. It is also statistically less significant that means employment opportunity is not enough comparing with urbanization.

    Some people come from rural areas to urban centers temporarily to exchange goods or information while others move permanently with hopes for new and better lives. Cities also have a distinctive lifestyle that set them apart from their rural counterparts. People move to cities to participate in a fast-paced and exciting lifestyle that is at odds with traditional ways of doing things (Lee, Tao & Anderson, 2012). The below table also show that some social factors also influence urbanization in Bangladesh.

    From the table we can see that literacy rate has negative relationship with population density. But it is statistically significant. It means literacy rate is not enough in Bangladesh. So, Bangladesh should take necessary steps to increase literacy rate. However, hospital bed also has no positive and strong relationship with population density. It is also statistically significant. In Bangladesh, towns and cities are generally better served than rural areas in terms of access to healthcare (Urban Divide Report, 2010).

    As Sajor (2001) stated that the differences in standard of living are major issues when considering factors that encourage urbanization. Higher living standards in the city attract people to move to the cities. Length of road and transportation are also significant is at 99% significance level. Though, some area has not enough road and transportation facilities is not good enough. On the other hand, the statistical analysis of drinking water is good enough and significant as well.

    The above analysis shows that length of road has no positive relationship with population density. But it is statistically significant. However, there are not enough roads in urban areas. The rapid urbanization is putting pressure on the cities limited land, and already fragile environment, and weak urban services. urban traffic is reaching nightmare proportions, often causing massive delays in covering small distances with associated productivity losses (Kabir & Parolin, 2011). So, Bangladesh should take necessary initiative to develop more roads and highways. Moreover, drinking water has positive relationship with population density. But it is not statistically significant. On the other hand, transportation has strong relationship and statistically significant with population density. It means that population density in urban areas are too much high. So, there are large numbers of transportation and many people of urban areas are involved in this sector to earn livelihood.

    V. CONCLUSIONS

    Bangladesh has been undergoing a very rapid phase of urbanization. This study also looked at all 64 Bangladeshi districts and found a relationship with urban development. Population density is a good measure of urban development in the case of Bangladesh. Other measures or a combination of measures that take into account agriculture, garments, manufacture industry, service industry, vendor, construction, length of road, drinking water, transportation and hospital bed all measures may help to paint a more complete picture of the dynamics of urban development in Bangladesh.

    In Bangladesh, cultivation or agriculture decreased gradually when the urbanization increased. Business sector’s contribution has been increasing; it has a good impact on Bangladeshi economy and movement towards the developed world. Urbanization in Bangladesh is still dominated by manufacture. Lee & Hasan (2013) also stated that urbanization is arguably the most fundamental factors in Bangladeshi economic development. Major industrial activities and auxiliary business services are concentrated in the largest cities. So, this study suggests that to reach to mature urbanization some reform of industrial structure is needed. From the above discussion, it can be said that Bangladesh should consider these factors as a positive strategy in development plan. This would enable to more effectively contribute to the acceleration of positive growth of Bangladesh.

    However, vendor, length of road, transportation and garments industry has strong relation with the population density and statistically significant. On the other hand, drinking water and public employee also have less relation and statistically significant whereas public employee also relationship with population density. Moreover, agriculture is gradually decreasing and the manufacture industry or business increasing gradually. Unemployment rate is still high it means that many people are jobless. Hospital bed, literacy rate are also not enough. Finally, Bangladesh has been undergoing a very rapid phase of urban development that has left it with striking accomplishments alongside the usual problems of urbanization, excessively higher land prices, a huge slum population, unusual traffic congestion, regular water shortages, irregular electricity supply, inadequate sanitation and drainage, increasing air pollution, weak governance and poor law and order situation. The results of this study suggest that Bangladesh may be moving in such a good direction of combining urban development with some of the factors that make the better environment of urbanization.

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    • [<Table 1>] Growth of National and Urban Population in Bangladesh, 1991 & 2001
      Growth of National and Urban Population in Bangladesh, 1991 & 2001
    • [<Table 2>] Variables Definition & Sources
      Variables Definition & Sources
    • [<Table 3>] Descriptive Statistics
      Descriptive Statistics
    • [<Table 4>] Correlation
      Correlation
    • [<Table 5>] Regression Analysis
      Regression Analysis