Millions Fed: Proven Successes in Agricultural Development

Pumping up Production

Shallow tubewells and rice in Bangladesh

Mahabub Hossain

Key period: 1989–present

Geographic region: Bangladesh

The intervention: Market liberalization in Bangladesh during the mid-1980s eased restrictions on the importation and sale of irrigation equipment, primarily low-lift power pumps and shallow tube wells. These reforms stimulated the growth of irrigated rice farming during the dry season, accounting for 90 percent of the increase in rice production in Bangladesh between 1988 and 2007 and benefiting about 22 million people per year. With this growth in rice production came a decline in real rice prices, benefiting food-insecure households in particular and ultimately significantly reducing poverty.

Book Chapter:
Pumping up Production: Shallow tubewells and rice in Bangladesh**
Mahabub Hossain
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Discussion Paper:
The impact of shallow tubewells and boro rice on food security in Bangladesh
Hossain, Mahabub. 2009. IFPRI Discussion Paper 917.
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