Child labour rises by 4.5% in a decade: National child labour survey

At present, Bangladesh has 39.9 million children aged 5-17 years, up from 39.6 million mentioned in the National Child Labour Survey 2013.


July 20, 2023

DHAKA – The number of children engaged in child labour in Bangladesh increased by 4.5 per cent in the last one decade to 17.76 lakh now from 16.98 lakh in 2013, according to the findings of the National Child Labour Survey 2022.

At present, Bangladesh has 3.99 crore children aged 5-17 years, up from 3.96 crore mentioned in the National Child Labour Survey 2013.

In the gap of the surveys, the number of working children has increased to 35.36 lakh from 34.5 lakh.

But the good thing is the number of children engaged in hazardous labour decreased by 16.55 per cent to 10.68 lakh now from 12.8 lakh in 2013.

Various initiatives taken by the government to eradicate child labour have helped Bangladesh lower the number of children in hazardous labour, the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) said in its provisional report on “National Child Labour Survey 2022”.

Some 51.79 per cent or 2 crore of the children of the latest survey are male and the rest or 1.92 crore female.

Of the children working at present, 27 lakh are male children and 8 lakh female children.

Here, males outnumbered the females in the number of children engaged in child labour.

Bangladesh’s rural areas have over 3 crore children aged between 5-17 years whereas the number is 96 lakh in case of urban areas.

Around 27 lakh children in rural areas are currently involved in work whereas the number is over 3 times less in urban areas, only 8 lakh.

The service sector is the highest provider of jobs to the children aged 5-17 years. Here, industry sector is second biggest employer of the children and the agriculture sector the third.

Around 12.7 lakh children are employed in the service sector, 11.9 lakh in the industry sector and 10.8 lakh in agriculture, the survey finds.

Planning Minister MA Mannan attended the publication event as the chief guest presided over by BBS Director General Md Matiar Rahman.

Labour and Employment Secretary Md Ehsan-E-Elahi, Statistics and Informatics Division Secretary Shahnaz Arefin, Deputy High Commissioner and Development Director of British High Commission Matt Cannell and ILO Country Director Tuomo Poutiainen also attended the event.

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