Bangladesh’s export potentials to EU untapped

Bangladesh’s export potentials to the European Union countries still remained untapped despite ‘best possible’ market access, the head of EU delegation in Dhaka, Ambassador William Hanna said on Wednesday stressing on diversification of export basket.With Bangladesh’s more than half of exports destined to its member states, the EU is the number one trade partner of the country.
But the readymade clothing comprise the bulk of the export and hence Ambassador Hanna said “diversification has not been adequate despite some new export items included in the list like the ship-building”.
He was inaugurating a two-day workshop on export capacity building for Bangladeshi stakeholders.
Bangladesh German Chamber of Commerce and Industries (BGCCI) and German’s development arm GIZ jointly organised the workshop with the support of EU to sensitise stakeholders on market access opportunities and trade sustainability.
Hanna said EU had provided “the best possible market access to Bangladesh for several decades through GSP and a quota free access of its exports as one of the LDCs”.
Citing latest export figure, he said, they had relaxed rules for GSP in 2011 and that contributed a “quantum jump” in exports to EU.
Last year Bangladesh exported more than € 9billion worth of goods to EU which was 7 percent increase over the previous year and 40 percent increase from 2010.
“The latest data also showed steadily increasing trend of export to EU despite the fact European economy is yet to recover from the recession,” the ambassador said.
“You may recall that the relaxation of GSP rules had given a golden opportunity to Bangladeshi exporters to diversify their exports which so far remained largely limited to RMG or clothing.
“The potentials for exports of non-textile industrial products with a very liberal originating rule –30 percent domestic value addition – are untapped,” he said.
He hoped that the training would “show directions towards that”.
He, however, reminded that Bangladeshi businessmen “cannot ignore the importance of decent working conditions as increasingly the consumers as well as the importers in EU are becoming sensitive to the sourcing of products they buy”.
He said the recent factory disasters ‘renewed’ their concerns on labour safety issue among other related factors which he said “may impede the sustainability of the phenomenal success of Bangladesh’s RMG sector, in particular”.
He once again reiterated EU’s continued support to Bangladesh in improving its trade capacity ‘in a sustainable manner’. (Source:

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