Soil salinity is a particularly damaging problem for Bangladesh
Agriculture as a sector remains the largest employer in Bangladesh, in addition to being one of the largest contributors to the country’s GDP. It is also the sector that is always under tremendous pressure, due to our limited land, and a population of close to 170 million people, and any measures taken to strengthen it, to make it more efficient, should be welcomed.
Therefore, it is extremely encouraging to see the technological innovations taking place in Satkhira, providing the farmers there with smartphones equipped with apps to access information about any agriculture-related issues.
In addition to the agriculture sector, already reaping the benefits -- which include reducing the salinity of the soil and easing the cultivation of not only crops, but also poultry and fish farming -- what has been particularly encouraging to see is the effect it has had on the women of the region, becoming self-sufficient after venturing into farming endeavours.
With the advent of climate change, and increasing salt water intrusion, soil salinity is a particularly damaging problem for Bangladesh; in the last 35 years, salinity has increased by around 26% in the country, spreading into non-coastal areas as well, and there is hope that these new technological advancements will prepare the country better to combat this prevailing issue.
It is important to remember that, despite the many strides Bangladesh has made as a nation, in identifying new ways to generate GDP, in diversifying our export basket, we are still, fundamentally, an agricultural nation.