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Details of Cox's Bazar District

Background, Geographic Area and Location: Cox’s Bazar, a coastal district, was formerly a sub-division of Chittagong district. It became a sub-division in 1854 and was upgraded to a district in 1984. It is located at the fringe of the Bay of Bengal with an unbroken sea-beach which is probably the longest one in the world. It is bounded on the north by Chittagong district, on the east by Bandarban district and Myanmar, on the south by the Bay of Bengal and on the west by the Bay of Bengal. It lies between 20º43' and 21º56' north latitudes and between 91º50' and 92º23' east longitudes. The total area of the district is 2,491.85 sq. km. (962.10 sq. miles) out of which 940.58 sq. km is under forest.

Annual Average Temperature and Rainfall: Annual average temperature and rainfall varies from maximum 34.8°C to minimum 16.1°C. The annual average rainfall is 4285 mm. The district having been a coastal region often fall victim to sea storm, tidal bore, hurricane and cyclone.

Main Offshore Islands: Maheshkhali, Kutubdia, Matarbari, Sonadia, Shah Pari and St. Martin or Jinjira are main offshore islands of this district.

Main Rivers and Chennels: The Matamuhuri, Bakkhali, Reju Khal, Naf, Maheshkhali channel and Kutubdia channel are main rivers and chennels of this district.

Main Forests Areas: Phulchhari Range, Bhumaria-ghona Range, Meher-ghona Range, Bak Khali Range. Cox's Bazar represents the longest sea beach of the world and charming forest belt.

Administration: The district consists of 8 upazilas, 71 unions, 177 mauzas, 989 villages, 4 paurashavas, 39 wards and 164 mahallas. The upazilas are Chakoria, Cox's Bazar Sadar, Kutubdia, Moheskhali, Pekua, RamuTeknaf and Ukhiya.

Archaeological Heritage and Relics: Adinath Temple (Maheskhali), Tomb of Shah Umar (in Chakoria), Satgumbad Masjid of Fazl Quke at Manikpur, Hasher dighi, Bir Kamla dighi, (in Teknaf) Well of Mathin, (in Kutubdia) Kalarma Masjid, Tomb of Qutub Awliya, (in Ramu) Ramkot Hindu Mandir, Ramkot Buddhist Keyang, Lamarpara Buddhist Keyang, (in Ukhia) Patabari Buddhist Keyang, Kutupalang Buddhist Keyang, Kanabazar underground channel, (in Cox's Bazar) Agvamedha Buddhist Keyang, Buddhist Pagoda, single domed mosque at Jhilanga are notable archaeological heritage and relics of Cox’s Bazar.

Historical Events: The Arab traders and preachers came to the ports of Chittagong and Akiab in the eighth century AD and consequently the Arab Muslims came in close contact with Cox's Bazar area situated between the two ports. The greater Chittagong including Cox's Bazar was under the rule of Harikela king Kantideva in the nineteenth century. The Arakan king Sulat Inga Chandra (930-975) captured Chittagong in 953 AD and since then Cox's Bazar had been a part of the kingdom of Arakan. Chittagong remained part of the kingdom of Arakan till its conquest by the Mughals in 1666 AD. The Mughal general Buzurg Umed Khan captured the Magh Fort on the southern bank of the Karnafuli and the Arakanise took shelter in the Ramu Fort, which was later surprised by the Mughals.

The company, with a view to establish settlement in Cox's Bazar area, took a liberal policy of distributing land to the cultivators and this encouraged people from different parts of Chittagong district and from Arakan to settle in Cox's Bazar area. The Burmese king Bodhapaya (1782-1819) captured Arakan in 1784 AD. About thirty thousand Arakanese escaped the atrocities of the Burmese king to Cox's Bazar area in 1799 AD. The East India Company deputed one Captain Hiram Cox to arrange for the rehabilitation of the refugees (1799). Each refugee family was granted 2.4 acres of land and also granted food support for six months. Hiram Cox died (1799) before the completion of rehabilitation work. To commemorate his role in rehabilitation work a market was established and was named after him as Cox's Bazar (market of Cox) which originates the name of the place.

Educational Institutions: The numbers of educational instituyions of this district are government college 4, non-government college 17, government high school 6, non-government high school 107, junior high school 8, madrasa 150, government primary school 376, non-government primary school 235, NGO operated primary school 22, primary teacher's training institute 1.

Main Crops: Paddy, potato, pulse, onion, garlic, ginger, betel leaf, betel nut, wheat, sugarcane, ground nut, tobacco, rubber and vegetables are main crops of this district.

Manufacturing Industries: The number of manufacturing industries of this district are rice mill 473, salt mill 38, ice factory 64, flour mill 145, fish processing industry 31, fish feed mill 1, saw mill 74, printing press 18.

Economic Situation: The economy of Cox’s Bazar is predominantly agricultural. Out of total 335,825 holdings of the district, 44.15% holdings are farms that produce varieties of crops, namely, local and HYV rice, wheat, vegetables, spices, cash crops, pulses, betel leaves and others. Various fruits like banana, jackfruit, guava, coconut, etc. are grown. Fish of different varieties abound in this district which enjoys the advantages of marine fishing. Moreover, varieties of fish are caught from rivers, tributary channels and creeks and even from paddy field during rainy season. Prawn is abundantly available in the district. Prawn farming and salt production in the coastal area of the district are the most important economic activities of the area. Dry fish is an important source of income to the fishermen especially in the islands. The district is also very rich in forest resources. Various valuable timber and forest trees are abundantly grown in this district. Apart from all these, the sea beach of Cox’s Bazar is the most attractive place in the country to the tourists who like to visit the place throughout the year.