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Impact of Rohingya refugees on food prices in Bangladesh: Evidence from a natural experiment

Ashraful Alam, Indranil Dutta, M. Emranul Haque and Ricardo Nogales

World Development, 2022, vol. 154, issue C

Abstract: The Rohingya crisis is the fourth largest displacement of population in the world, with most refugees sheltering in neighbouring Bangladesh. We use this event as a natural experiment to examine the impact of the sudden influx of Rohingyas on food prices in the main host region of Bangladesh. We have pieced together a unique data set on food prices based on unpublished information at local government levels covering the pre- and post-influx period. We use a difference-in-difference approach to identify the impact of the refugee influx on the prices in the local area. Our baseline results indicate that overall food prices increased by 8 percent in the host sub-district of Ukhia, with prices of protein and vegetables increasing by 7 and 36 percent, respectively. For aid-supplied food products, such as cereals and lentils, we do find a statistically significant mitigating effect on prices. However, they were not substantial enough to reverse the increase in food prices.

Keywords: Bangladesh; Difference in difference; Food prices; Refugees; Rohingya (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
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Citations: View citations in EconPapers (1)

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DOI: 10.1016/j.worlddev.2022.105873

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