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BGMEA urges extension of duty-free access in Canada

Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) has urged Canadian authorities to extend the duty-free access provision for Bangladeshi RMG products after the country graduates from the Least Developed Countries (LDC) status in December 2023.

BGMEA extension duty-free access Canada
Figure: BGMEA Vice President Moshiul Azam handed over crests to the Canadian MPs.

Commerce Minister, Tipu Munshi and the BGMEA delegation comprising of Vice President Md Moshiul Azam Shajal met with Canadian Minister of Border Security, Bill Blair and discussed bilateral issues of trade, accessible visa for Bangladeshi businessmen and the duty-free extension.

The delegation also met with Canadian MP, Nathaniel, who is in charge of business relations with Bangladesh. Moshiul Azam handed over crests to the Canadian MPs.

Maria Minna, honorable member of the Queen’s Privy Council; Masudur Rahman, President Canada Bangladesh Chamber and Fazle Elahi Raju, Director of Designtex Group and the High Commissioner of Bangladesh to Canada were also present among others in the meeting.

Moshiul Azam later met Victor Fedeli, Canadian Minister for Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade and discussed the increasing business between Canada and Bangladesh.

They had the discussion at Bangladesh Canada Business Forum 2019 in Toronto, Canada. The discussion included items like textiles and garments, pharmaceuticals, ceramic, IT, etc.

Canada imported apparel worth $1.17 billion in the last fiscal year, up by 22.44% from the previous fiscal, according to the EPB.

BD-Canada trade relations

Canada’s main merchandise imports from Bangladesh include:

  1. Woven apparel
  2. Knit apparel
  3. Miscellaneous textile articles
  4. Headgear and footwear

Canada’s commercial relationship with Bangladesh has grown significantly over the last 14 years. The value of bilateral merchandise trade has more than tripled from $600.5 million in 2004 to over $2.4 billion Canadian dollars in 2018. During this period, Canadian merchandise exports to Bangladesh have increased over six-fold.

Canadian merchandise exports to Bangladesh were $651 million in 2018, of which 70% were agriculture items. Canadian merchandise imports from Bangladesh were nearly $1.7 billion in 2018.

Canada’s main exports to Bangladesh include:

  1. Cereals
  2. Pulses
  3. Iron and steel
  4. Fertilizer (potash)
  5. Chemicals

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