If 60 per cent of the people in the country are vaccinated against coronavirus in the next two years, it will bring a financial benefit of ৮ 2.46 billion to the economy. And to vaccinate 80 percent of the people, starting from the purchase of vaccines and the cost of supplies will cost at least 116 crore US dollars or about 10 thousand crore rupees. A World Bank report says the hard-earned immunity of the masses could be greatly benefited by spending the money.
The World Bank’s recently released ‘South Asia Economic Focus Spring 2021: South Asia Vaccines’ report gives three possible figures on how much it will cost to vaccinate 80 percent of the population in South Asian countries, including Bangladesh, in the next two years. The report also analyzes the benefits of vaccines in the economies of South Asian countries, including Bangladesh.
The World Bank report said that if the corona had been vaccinated at the outset, it would have saved 160,000 people in South Asia, but would not have lost as much as 20 percent of GDP. Because, lockdown has saved many lives but has damaged livelihoods.
The World Bank also said that vaccination would not be able to offset the damage to the economy. It will take time to regain the investment and growth that has been lost. Because, many businesses are becoming defaulters. Many people have become unemployed. Even without vaccination, the economy will recover. However, vaccination will lead to faster economic recovery. It will also be possible to recover quickly from trade losses. The recovery period will be reduced.
Zahid Hossain, a former chief economist at the World Bank’s Dhaka office, told Prothom Alo that there was no time to worry about the cost of vaccination. The World Bank, ADB is paying. So providing money is not a big problem. Vaccination is the best option to revive the economy. There is no alternative around this. According to him, the problem in the vaccination process is whether we can buy the vaccine as per the demand in time. It is unknown at this time what he will do after leaving the post. Besides, the biggest challenge now is to vaccinate 130 million people in the country, how many people have to be vaccinated every day and to ensure supply accordingly.
The World Bank has calculated three possible costs. The World Bank has calculated the three possible costs of the vaccine based on how much money the government will pay for the vaccine and how much the development partner will pay, who is buying the vaccine and so on.
In the first one, it has been said that the total cost of vaccinating a person for two doses will be 19 dollars or 1,615 rupees (the exchange rate per dollar is 75 rupees). In the next two years, it will cost Bangladesh ১৯ 192 crore to vaccinate about 80 percent of the population, amounting to about Rs 16,000 crore. Of the three possible costs, the World Bank called it “disappointing.”
As a second possible cost, it would cost a total of ৬ 16 to 18 to give a person two doses of the vaccine. And to vaccinate 80 percent of the people, the total cost will be 136 crore dollars or 11 thousand crore rupees. The World Bank calls this calculation ‘realistic’. The latest two-dose vaccine will cost ৬ 8. In addition, transportation costs will be added. In all, it would cost ৭ 117 billion, or about হাজার 10,000 billion, to vaccinate 80 percent of the population. The World Bank calls it an ‘optimistic’ account. The cost has been calculated from the price of Covax Ticker.
Considering the third calculation, the World Bank said that it would cost Bangladesh 0.10 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2021 and 0.23 percent next year to vaccinate 80 percent of the population. Vaccinating 80 per cent of the country’s people by 2020 and 2021 will create a kind of hard immunity among them, which has huge economic benefits, according to the World Bank, with a financial value of about ২ 2.48 billion.