Sheikh Hasina-led Awami League to win third term: EIU

London: Speculations are high that Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina would win third consecutive term in Parliament in the elections on December 30 this year.

London-based Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) said in a report that Awami League would return to power with majority of parliamentary seats in the upcoming parliamentary election principally due to the fact that it has overseen solid economic growth.

“We expect real GDP to grow at 7.7% on an annual average basis in 2019-23, propelled by robust growth in private consumption and fixed investment”, said EIU in its report by adding that the country’s impressive record of economic growth and socio-economic development under the Awami League administration, coupled with a lack of an effective opposition election campaign, will be enough to fend off any challenge posed by BNP or Jatiya Oikya Front more broadly.

It states that Sheikh Hasina remains the most popular candidate, according to numerous local opinion polls.

The report adds that a win for Awami League will be important in sustaining foreign investment, and will also support the administration’s drive to expand and deepen private sector participation in the economy.

Following such a win, Bangladesh is expected to continue to exploit its strategically important location on the Bay of Bengal to extract concessions and economic assistance from India, China and Japan, said the report.

Khaleda Zia, the opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party’s leader, remains in jail on corruption charges, further reducing the party’s chances of gaining a significant share of the vote in the national polls, said EIU.