Bangladesh + 1 more

Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh: Market Monitor (August 2020)

Situation Report
Originally published


Key Messages

• In August, mixed price trends was observed in the markets, with rice price (41–44 BDT/Kg) continuing to rise in most markets, lentil prices fluctuating week-on-week, oil price is stable, and price of garlic continues to decline.

• Almost six months into the COVID-19 pandemic, the same mixed trends are observed across commodities. However, better integrated, centrally located market-hubs such as Chattogram have clearly been less impacted by rising prices of staples such as rice and lentils as compared to markets in Cox’s Bazar.

• Rice prices forecasted to remain high owing to Aus1 and Aman1 crop losses due to the recent floods and heavy monsoon. Bumper harvest during the Boro season however expected to cover demand for rice reserve.

• Overall, all markets within Cox’s Bazar district are running at approximately 50 percent functionality on average, with Ukhia faring marginally better than others for providing with more variety of product choice and having better stock compared to others.

• Supply chain functionality in terms of responsiveness and availability of goods is high but low assortment of goods and high price volatility scores across the region has lowered overall market functionality.

• Five out of ten traders reported that consumers are buying less goods than usual, where two out of ten traders said that customers are asking to buy on credit, highlighting continued strains on purchasing power and consumer demand.

• In camp markets, slight increase in purchasing power with the partial reopening of economy had positive impact on reduced credit purchase.

• The widespread decrease in sales volume has not affected business sustenance for majority of traders (72 percent) in the region as adversely but tax relief and loan disbursement have emerged as perceivably the most needed policy support mechanisms for the remaining (28 percent) vulnerable trader community.