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Country analysis

Bangladesh


In 2024, around 38 million people in Bangladesh need humanitarian assistance. An estimated 35 million face moderate to severe chronic food insecurity – i.e. Moderate (IPC Level 3) or Severe (IPC Level 4) levels. The main drivers include the impact of frequent climate disasters, such as floods and tropical cyclones, unsustainable livelihood sources that generate inadequate and unpredictable income, and low levels of physical, financial, and human capital.

The high prices of essential goods, including fuel and food, persistently high inflation rates, and currency depreciation reduce people’s purchasing power. Reduced levels of foreign reserves to finance imports, a surge in loan defaults, and customs evasion and money laundering also put pressure on the country’s economy.

Bangladesh hosts more than 970,000 Rohingya refugees. The country is not a party to the 1951 Refugee Convention and registers the Rohingya as forcibly displaced Myanmar nationals. They lack formal legal status, face extreme movement restrictions, and are not permitted to legally work. The Rohingya population in Cox’s Bazar is entirely dependent on humanitarian assistance. Insecurity and violence, overcrowding and a lack of privacy, and inadequate WASH facilities characterise camp conditions.

(IPC 15/06/2022, IPC 01/06/2023, Prothom Alo 17/10/2023, UNHCR accessed 04/02/2024, ACAPS 30/08/2022)

In 2024, around 38 million people in Bangladesh need humanitarian assistance. An estimated 35 million face moderate to severe chronic food insecurity – i.e. Moderate (IPC Level 3) or Severe (IPC Level 4) levels. The main drivers include the impact of frequent climate disasters, such as floods and tropical cyclones, unsustainable livelihood sources that generate inadequate and unpredictable income, and low levels of physical, financial, and human capital.

The high prices of essential goods, including fuel and food, persistently high inflation rates, and currency depreciation reduce people’s purchasing power. Reduced levels of foreign reserves to finance imports, a surge in loan defaults, and customs evasion and money laundering also put pressure on the country’s economy.

Bangladesh hosts more than 970,000 Rohingya refugees. The country is not a party to the 1951 Refugee Convention and registers the Rohingya as forcibly displaced Myanmar nationals. They lack formal legal status, face extreme movement restrictions, and are not permitted to legally work. The Rohingya population in Cox’s Bazar is entirely dependent on humanitarian assistance. Insecurity and violence, overcrowding and a lack of privacy, and inadequate WASH facilities characterise camp conditions.

(IPC 15/06/2022, IPC 01/06/2023, Prothom Alo 17/10/2023, UNHCR accessed 04/02/2024, ACAPS 30/08/2022)

Latest updates on country situation

07 January 2024

On 7 January, a fire in a Rohingya refugee camp in Ukhia, Cox’s Bazar, destroyed nearly 750 shelters. It damaged or destroyed around 120 facilities, including learning centres, mosques, and healthcare centres, displacing 5,000 Rohingya refugees. They are temporarily residing in community centres or homes of other community members. (UNHCR 07/01/2024, UNHCR 09/01/2024, IOM 06/12/2018)

10 December 2023

As at 14 December, more than 3,970 Rohingya had undertaken maritime journeys in 2023 to flee increased insecurity, poor socioeconomic conditions, and access restrictions in Bangladesh and Myanmar. Nearly two-thirds of this number disembarked in Indonesia. These people urgently need food, shelter, protection, health, and WASH assistance. (UNHCR accessed 22/12/2023, Al Jazeera 10/12/2023, The Guardian 08/01/2023)

02 November 2023

Tropical Cyclone Hamoon made landfall on coastal areas of Chattogram and Cox’s Bazar districts in southeastern Bangladesh on the night of 24 October 2023. The cyclone damaged or destroyed nearly 43,000 houses and damaged around 15,500 acres of cropland. It affected 590,000 people, including 310,000 children, 19,200 elderly people, 7,900 lactating and pregnant women, and 8,500 people with disabilities. Urgent needs include shelter items, such as tents, tarpaulins, and shelter tool kits, clothes, kitchen utensils, and cash support. Farmers need livelihood support, especially in the form of agricultural inputs, such as seeds, fertilisers, pesticides, and tools. Based on past urgent needs in similar disaster events, children would need psychosocial support, pregnant and lactating women would need basic obstetric services, and damaged WASH facilities would need repairs or rebuilding, especially for elderly people and people with disabilities. (CARE 30/10/2023, ECHO 25/10/2023, TBS 26/10/2023)

26 September 2023

There are around 963,000 registered Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh; around 932,000 of them live in the refugee camps of Ukhia and Teknaf subdistricts, Cox’s Bazar district, which is the world’s largest refugee settlement. They are not allowed to travel outside the settlement. Movement between and inside camps is also limited, as they have to cross checkpoints where they face arbitrary movement restrictions, arrests, extortion, and harassment by security forces. The refugees also have to comply with an 18:00–06:00 curfew, which makes them increasingly vulnerable to violence from armed groups and gangs that tend to take control of camps at night and whose activities have significantly increased in the last two years. Refugees’ access to basic necessities such as food, water, and healthcare completely depends on humanitarian aid, and such movement restrictions limit their access to humanitarian assistance. (UNHCR 11/09/2023, HRW 17/01/2023, RFA 22/09/2023)

23 July 2023

As at 25 July, Bangladesh had recorded the highest-ever number of dengue cases for the period of January–July in 2023. 40,000 cases (around 2,500 in Rohingya refugee camps), including over 200 deaths, were recorded. Dengue cases and deaths usually peak in August and September. (New Age 21/07/2023, DGHS 25/07/2023, TBS 17/07/2023)

16 May 2023

Cyclone Mocha has destroyed more than 300 shelters and damaged 3,900 in the Rohingya refugee camps in Cox's Bazar. It has also damaged 100 latrines, 45 learning centres, and 12 water points, affecting more than 21,000 people. Among them, more than 3,500 people are displaced. The affected population is in urgent need of food, clean drinking water, and other essential items, such as clothing, blankets, hygiene kits, and jerrycans. They also need housing repair and rehabilitation assistance. (ISCG accessed 16/05/2023, UN 15/05/2023, New Age 16/05/2023)

current crises
in Bangladesh


These crises have been identified through the INFORM Severity Index, a tool for measuring and comparing the severity of humanitarian crises globally.

Read more about the Index

 

BGD010 - Complex crisis

Last updated 27/12/2023


Drivers

Socio-political
Displacement
Floods
Cyclone
Food Security
Epidemic
Other seasonal event

Crisis level

Country

Severity level

4.1 Very High

Access constraints

3.0

BGD002 - Rohingya Refugees

Last updated 26/01/2024


Drivers

Conflict
Violence
Displacement

Crisis level

Country

Severity level

3.3 High

Access constraints

2.0

REG011 - Rohingya Regional Crisis

Last updated 27/01/2024


Drivers


Crisis level

Regional

Severity level

4 High

Access constraints

5.0

Analysis products
on Bangladesh

Bangladesh: 2023 dengue outbreak

26 September 2023

Bangladesh: 2023 dengue outbreak

DOCUMENT / PDF / 1 MB

Bangladesh is experiencing its largest and most severe dengue outbreak since the country began compiling data on cases in 2000. As at 16 September 2023, nearly 167,700 confirmed dengue cases were reported, exceeding by over 66,300 the previous highest record of around 101,300 for the entire 2019.

Health
Impact of Cyclone Mocha

23 May 2023

Impact of Cyclone Mocha

DOCUMENT / PDF / 931 KB

On 14 May 2023, the extremely severe cyclonic storm Mocha made landfall between Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh and Kyaukpyu township in Myanmar. The cyclone caused significant damage to critical infrastructure, houses, and shelters in western and northern Myanmar, and in Bangladesh’s southeastern Chattogram division. 

Natural hazards

Attached resources

Rising violence, insecurity, and protection concerns in Cox’s Bazar refugee camps

12 May 2023

Rising violence, insecurity, and protection concerns in Cox’s Bazar refugee camps

DOCUMENT / PDF / 744 KB

There are about 931,000 registered Rohingya refugees living in the camps of Ukhia and Teknaf upazilas in Cox’s Bazar. Nearly 30,000 registered Rohingya refugees have been relocated and are living in houses in Bhasan Char, an island off the Bangladeshi coast. 

Protection

Attached resources

Bangladesh: Challenges in analysing needs over time using MSNAs

23 November 2022

Bangladesh: Challenges in analysing needs over time using MSNAs

DOCUMENT / PDF / 442 KB

This technical note outlines the key challenges the ACAPS team faced while analysing and comparing data across multiple MSNAs. It also aims to encourage assessment designers and coordinators to consider the future use of their data with the immediate requirements, even as they seek to improve data collection or overcome changes based on the context of the people in need. 

Needs of Rohingya refugees and host communities in Cox's Bazar since 2017

30 August 2022

Needs of Rohingya refugees and host communities in Cox's Bazar since 2017

DOCUMENT / PDF / 1 MB

This report provides an overview of how the reported needs and priorities of both Rohingya and host communities have evolved since 2018, when the first major assessments were carried out. The comparisons here were mainly based on two annual representative assessments, the Joint Multi-Sector Needs Assessment and the Refugee Influx Emergency Vulnerability Assessment.

View more

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Rohingya crisis

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Rohingya crisis


Providing invaluable analytical support to the Rohingya refugee response from 2017–2022.