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No alternative to FTA for expansion of BD’s global trade: Minister

Published : Sunday, 20 October, 2019 at 12:00 AM  Count : 932

Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi said when Bangladesh graduates from less development country (LDC) to a developing country, there will be no alternative to free trade agreement (FTA) with different countries for the expansion of our global trade.
The Minister said this at a seminar titled, 'Fostering Global Free Trade Relations' organized by the Commonwealth of Independent States Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CIS-BCCI) at a city hotel on Saturday.
With CIS-BCCI President Habib Ullah Dawn in the chair, Dhaka North City
Corporation Mayor Md Atiqul Islam, Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister Md Nojibur Rahman, Commerce Secretary Dr Jafar Uddin, BGMEA Acting President Foysal Samad, BKMEA First Vice President Md Hatem, CPD Distinguish Fellow Dr Mustafizur Rahman and Additional Secretary Sharifa Khan of the Commerce Ministry addressed the seminar.
CIS-BCCI Adviser Monzur Ahmed and Senior Vice President Lokman Hossain Akash jointly made the keynote presentation.
The Minister said Bangladesh will transform into a developing country in 2021, after three years, the trade benefits of the LDC-affected countries will no longer exist. In order to continue Bangladesh's progress in the competitive world trade, trade benefits should be increased. Bangladesh is looking for new markets to boost export trade.
He said the government is giving the highest priority to FTA for expansion of the country's trade and export.
"We need FTA considering the necessity of the country's future challenges in the competitive global trade after the formal enlistment in the list of developing nations in 2024," he said.
The Commerce Minister said Bangladesh has a good market for its readymade garment items in the Eurasia and has a potentiality to export US$ 4 to 5 billion to Russia and its neighbouring countries.
Referring to the government's ongoing efforts to sign FTA with MERCOSUR countries, he said the FTA with Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay would boost Bangladesh's apparel export.
Nojibur Rahman said the government is very much business friendly and working relentlessly to improve the environment further. "Our (government) main aim is to improve the livelihood and economic scenarios of people through expanding trade and business activities," he added.

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