For the first time, a consignment of bean produced in Chattogram’s Sitakunda upazila has been exported to Italy, raising hope among farmers of the upazila which is already famous for vegetable production. Farmers and agriculture officials said Sitakunda upazila is known for production of variety of vegetables including beans. Beans are seen on vast lands on both sides of the Dhaka-Chittagong highway, on cropland, land alley, on both sides of the railway tracks, fallow land, embankments and even in hill slopes, they said. Read more: Prospects of Safe Broiler Chicken Farming The beans produced here are usually supplied to different parts of the country and this is the first time that this bean has been exported to Italy. Farmers said that although raw beans are sold in winter, dry bean seeds are sold throughout the year. Upazila Agriculture Officer said Md Habibullah said the soil of Sitakunda is suitable for bean cultivation and bean cultivation is more profitable than Boro paddy. “As a result, bean has been cultivated on 2,650 hectares of land in this upazila. This year, 47,000 metric tons of beans worth over Tk 100 crore will be produced.” Read more: Youth's success in orange farming sparks an agricultural trend in Kurigram
Bangladesh’s export earnings increased by 3.8 percent year-on-year to USD $4.78 billion in August, compared to the previous fiscal year (FY2022-23). The Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) published this information on Monday (September 04, 2023), which shows that the garment sector is the major contributor to the overall export earnings. The sector insider shows it as good news amidst falling inward remittances in August. Also read: RMG exports for July-August this year grow by 12.46% As a percentage, compared to 2022, export income increased by 3.8 percent in August 2023. However, the government's target was not met. The government's export revenue target for that month was over $4.87. According to EPB data, 26 types of products including garments, medicine, and leather were exported to the world market in the month of August of the current financial year 2023-24. From there, $4.78 crore has been earned in August. Also read: RMG exports: Bangladesh earned $3.95 billion in July, says BGMEA During the same period of the financial year 2022-23, the export revenue was $4.6 billion. Accordingly, compared to last year, the income has increased by $17.51 crore, which has increased by 3.8 percent. Also read: Bangladesh's RMG export to USA grows 6.31% in FY 2023-24
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has sought assistance from the International Fund of Agricultural Development (IFAD) to boost the production of wheat and edible oil in Bangladesh to reduce its export dependency for the two items. The assistance was sought when IFAD President Alvaro Lario met her at the FAO headquarters, Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen told reporters after the meeting on Monday (July 24, 2023). Read: Bangladesh signs agreement with WFP to expand school feeding programme Hasina also asked the IFAD to help Bangladeshi small agro-enterprises in marketing their goods and help the country build an efficient food storage system. Also on Monday the prime minister asked the World Food Programme (WFP) to raise funds for Bangladesh particularly displaced Rohingyas who took shelter in Bangladesh as per capita fund for Rohingya declined to US$ 8 from US$ 12. She made the call when WFP Executive Director Cindy Hensley McCain met her at the FAO Headquarters on Monday. Hasina said Bangladesh has successfully raised food production thanks to her government's taking various steps in this field. Read: PM Hasina offers Nepal use of Payra port during meeting with Nepalese counterpart in Rome Bangladesh is in a good position in producing not only crops but also fish and other foods, she said. Cindy Hensley McCain is the wife of former US presidential candidate John McCain who adopted a three-month Bangladeshi girl in the early 1990s. Meanwhile, the prime minister along with other heads of government and states attended a reception hosted by Director General of Food and Agriculture Organization Qu Dongyu at the FAO headquarters.
The higher estimate of 6% for FY 2023 (ending on June 30, 2023) reflects strong net exports as imports fell more sharply than expected and export growth slowed less than expected, says the Asian Development Bank (ADB). On the supply side, manufacturing firms of all sizes leveraged supportive government policies to contribute to growth. Crop losses to floods, cyclones, and droughts were partly offset by subsidies, incentives, and other measures. The service sector was buoyed by higher warehouse and support activities and health and social services. Enhancing growth, promoting prosperity: BIMSTEC retreat held in Bangkok On the demand side, growth in public consumption outpaced expectations, as did public investment. The ADO April 2023 forecast for growth in FY 2024 is unchanged at 6.5%. The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is maintaining its growth outlook for developing economies in Asia and the Pacific at 4.8% this year, as robust domestic demand continues to support the region’s recovery. Inflation is expected to continue falling, approaching pre-pandemic levels as fuel and food prices decline, according to the Asian Development Outlook (ADO) July 2023, released on Wednesday (July 19, 2023). Bangladesh sets $72 billion export target with 11.52% growth for FY 2023-24 Inflation in developing Asia is forecasted at 3.6% this year, compared with an April forecast of 4.2%. The inflation outlook for 2024, meanwhile, is raised to 3.4% from an earlier estimate of 3.3%. The reopening of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) is bolstering the region’s growth. The PRC’s economy is projected to expand 5.0% this year, unchanged from the April forecast, amid strong domestic demand in the services sector. However, demand for developing Asia’s exports of electronics and other manufactured goods is slowing, as monetary tightening drags on economic activity in major advanced economies. The region’s growth forecast for next year is marginally revised down to 4.7% from a 4.8% estimate in April. Despite over 8% revenue collection growth, Tk 44000 crore shortfall in FY 2022-23 “Asia and the Pacific continues to recover from the pandemic at a steady pace,” said ADB Chief Economist Albert Park. “Domestic demand and services activity are driving growth, while many economies are also benefiting from a strong recovery in tourism. However, industrial activity and exports remain weak, and the outlook for global growth and demand next year has worsened.”
Bangladesh's Ministry of Commerce has set an export target of $72 billion with 11.52 percent growth for the fiscal year 2023-24. Export target for goods has been set at $62 billion while for the service sector, the target was set at $10 billion. Export target achieved in FY 2022-23 was $64.55 billion, which saw a growth of 5.88 percent. RMG exports to EU grew 9.93% in FY 2022-23: Export Promotion Bureau Goods worth $55.55 billion and services worth $9 billion were exported in FY 2022-23, and the growth were 6.67 percent and 1.25 percent respectively. Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi today (July 12, 2023) made the announcement of the export target and achievements in the previous fiscal in a press conference at the ministry. Prior to the announcement, the minister met with leaders of different business organizations and ministry officials. RMG exports in FY23 almost $47bn, 85% of total exports Business leaders at the meeting urged the government to ensure uninterrupted gas and electricity supply to industries at affordable rates. Otherwise, exports would be negatively impacted, they told the minister. While announcing the new export target, Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi said the global economic slowdown has been considered when setting the new target. Gas and power crises have also been considered while setting the target, the minister said. Exports raked in $55.56bn in FY23, highest in history While replying to a query, the minister said Bangladesh has some advantages including trained labour force, and affordable cost of products. Besides, global entrepreneurs are relocating industries from China due to geo-political reasons, and Vietnam has a labour crisis, the minister said. If Bangladesh can utilize these opportunities, exports can go beyond the target, the commerce minister said. Dollar exchange rate for repatriated export income increased to Tk107.5
Speakers in a discussion said that the role of Bangladesh Accreditation Board (BAB) is crucial in attaining high export target of $100 billion by 2025-26. They said this in a discussion meeting on the occasion of International Accreditation Day-2023 jointly organized by Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) and Bangladesh Accreditation Board (BAB) at DCCI auditorium on Sunday. Also Read: NBR-private sector partnership crucial to achieve high revenue target: DCCI President Industries Minister Nurul Majid Mahmud Humayun, MP was present here as the chief guest while Industries Secretary Zakia Sultana and DCCI President Barrister Md. Sameer Sattar were present as special guests. Director General (Additional Secretary) of BAB Md. Monwarul Islam chaired the program. Also Read: Target $100 bn export earnings by 2026: Commerce Minister Nurul Majid said that the motto of this year’s accreditation day is “Accreditation: Supporting the Future of Global Trade” which is a very timely selection. He said, “if we can maintain the quality of products and services, we can grab the international market easily. For the sake of the country and to create confidence in our products in the global competitive market, BAB is working relentlessly to create awareness.” DCCI President Barrister Md. Sameer Sattar said that in the international market Bangladesh’s total trade was $141.42 billion. Bangladesh is gradually progressing to an export oriented country from import dependent country. In the last fiscal year, Bangladesh’s export was more than $52.08 billion. And for this export accreditation is a very important tool. To show the quality of specific products, there is a need for internationally accredited certificates and these certificates play a pivotal role in boosting exports, he said. Also Read: Bangladesh’s apparel export to cross $100 bn by 2030: experts Accredited products or services can enter into any MRA “Mutual Recognition Arrangement” country easily. At present Accreditation is not an auxiliary but it is now a must for world trade. BAB has taken initiative to get the membership of International Accreditation Forum (IAF), said Monwarul Islam, DG of BAB.
There is a reason why jackfruit is Bangladesh's national fruit. It grows in abundance across the country, particularly in the highland areas. Madhupur and Bhawal are among the top areas where jackfruit production is high. Once considered a backyard fruit, jackfruit now has the potential to become an export item - offering new economic opportunities and providing a sustainable food source for the population. In this article, we will explore how jackfruit can become a game-changer. Why Jackfruit? According to the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics, about 1.5 million metric tons of jackfruit are produced in Bangladesh every year. Researchers observed that in the last few years, about 45% of this total production, i.e., about 5 lakh tons of jackfruit were wasted. During jackfruit season, fruits like mango and litchi are available in the market, and it is difficult to process jackfruit for eating as compared to these fruits. Most people in Bangladesh think that jackfruit can only be eaten when it is ripe. There is a lack of interest in consuming unripe jackfruit. So a large part of the jackfruit produced in Bangladesh is wasted every year. Read More: Delicious Jackfruit Recipes to Try Out Today Keeping these issues in mind, researchers are trying to make food products with jackfruit that are easy to preserve for several months. Thus, they are aiming to reduce wastage and open up new economic prospects for the country. Products Made Using Jackfruit In recent times, various types of delicious foods are being prepared from jackfruit in Bangladesh, which includes jackfruit jam, pickles, chutney, chips, cutlets, ice cream, curd, ready-to-cook jackfruit, fresh cut (vegetable meat), jackfruit powder, and various other packaged products. Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute has developed these products for the first time in Bangladesh. Customers can find these products in several supermarkets and retail markets across the country. Between 2019 and 2022, the Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute partnered with NewVision Solutions Limited to carry out a three-year research program, titled "Jackfruit Postharvest Loss Reduction and Marketing Strategy". The objective of this program was to prevent the wastage of jackfruit and explore its various uses. Read More: 7 Nutritious, Delicious Jackfruit Recipes for Curries, Snacks, Salads As part of the project, the Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute provided training to around 700-800 individuals on the production and marketing of jackfruit. These individuals are now engaged in producing a variety of jackfruit products. Additionally, the institute is also offering free training to anyone who is interested in learning more about producing jackfruit products. Initially, the researchers focused their efforts on studying four products, namely jackfruit chips, pickles, fresh cuts, and dried products, as part of the project. However, they have now come to realize that jackfruit can be utilized as a resource for over 30 different products. According to researchers, the market demand for fresh-cut or unripe jackfruit is higher than that for other jackfruit products. This benefits farmers, as a single jackfruit that would usually sell for Tk 60-70 can be sold for Tk 200-250 as fresh-cut jackfruit. Read More: Corona, Amphan: Popular jackfruit haat in Jashore takes a hit Currently, a range of food items, such as unripe jackfruit vegetable rolls, cutlets, and shingara, are being prepared in the market. Meanwhile, ripe jackfruit juice is being used to make ice cream, cakes, and fruit roll-ups. In addition to that, these products made using jackfruit are already creating employment in the country. On the other hand, there is a demand for these products in the international market as well.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today (March 20, 2023) put emphasis on formulating new long term export policy for Bangladesh, considering graduation to a developing country from LDC after 2026. “After 2026, while we will graduate to a developing country from LDC, we will get some opportunities… We have to utilise those opportunities to make our economy stronger and develop the country further,” she said. The prime minister said this while speaking at the 11th meeting of the National Committee on Export, at her official residence Ganabhaban. She mentioned that after graduating to a developing nation, the next aim will be to become a developed one. Read More: Canada to increase potash exports to Bangladesh to boost food production, says country’s trade ministry Sheikh Hasina also asked the concerned to utilise opportunities regarding enhancing Bangladesh’s export items that have emerged due to Russia-Ukraine war. She said that due to Russia-Ukraine was, there is an opportunity for Bangladesh to create new markets with its own products. In this regard, she said that many countries have already shown interest to import food items from Bangladesh. “We could export food items after fulfilling local demands. We can take initiatives for that,” she said. Read More: Simplified policy, product diversification could boost exports to UK over $12 billion by 2029: Study says She said that immense opportunities could be created through establishing food processing industries in the country and export those items. The PM said that the government has given importance to the export sector. “After assuming office, we have taken steps to formulate long term export policies instead of policies on one-year basis. To sustain achievements, there is no alternative to long term strategy,” she said. She said that the government has formulated export policy until 2024 (2021-2024). Read More: Apparel export to EU up 14.3% during July-February of FY23 “…But what will we do after that? In the meantime, we are graduating to a developing country. I think this is the right time to consider what we will do in the coming days or how we will advance,” she said. She put emphasis on setting the next moves for economy, keeping in mind the current economic turmoil across the globe. “We have to find new markets across the globe. We have to diversify our products, we have to include new items in our export basket,” she said. The PM said that the Awami League government has given utmost importance to the private sector and it opened every sector to entrepreneurs as it is not possible for the government alone to develop the country. Read More: 'India a great potential market for Bangladesh's RMG exports' For the development of the export sector, she said, a strategy needs to be adopted and products have to be identified. “For that we have formulated a prospective plan – to turn the country into a developed one by 2041,” she said. The PM also mentioned ICT and digital devices, RMG, pharmaceuticals, light and medium weight industries, motor vehicles and electronic motor vehicles, while talking about diversifying products. She said that the government is preparing 100 economic zones with investment from home and abroad. Read More: Bangladesh export income rises despite bad global economy “Bangladesh has been able to attract foreign investments,” PM Hasina said.
Canada to increase potash exports to Bangladesh to boost food production, says country’s trade ministry
Canada is set to increase its potash exports to Bangladesh this year – aiming to strengthen food production and security in Bangladesh and support the country’s agricultural sector. The agreement to increase the supply of potash was signed between the Canadian Commercial Corporation, Saskatchewan-based Canpotex (one of the world’s largest suppliers), and the government of Bangladesh, the Canadian Trade Ministry said in a statement released on March 17. “The sale of Canadian potash to Bangladesh, made possible through the hard work of the Canadian Commercial Corporation, shows our commitment to being a reliable partner and quality supplier of agricultural products in the Indo-Pacific region. Canada is a global leader in helping to address challenges in global supply chains, all while promoting Canadian values and protecting good, middle-class Canadian jobs,” Mary Ng, Canadian Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development, said while announcing the agreement. Read More: Canada wants agro collaboration with Bangladesh, says visiting minister The agreement – under the country’s new Indo-Pacific strategy – will help Bangladesh address the increased food insecurity caused by the Russia-Ukraine war, according to the Canadian trade ministry statement. The Canadian Commercial Corporation has been supplying potash to Bangladesh since 2014. In 2022, Canada exported more than $500 million worth of potash to Bangladesh. According to Bangladesh Fertilizer Association (BFA), Bangladesh imported 80% of its potash requirements from Russia and Belarus and about 20% from Canada in recent years. However, due to sanctions and payment-related complications since the Russia-Ukraine war broke out, Bangladesh is not able to import potash from Russia and Belarus. Read More: BGMEA for Bangladesh mission's support for explore more trade opportunities in Canada
The European Union's (EU) apparel imports from Bangladesh saw 14.29 percent growth during the first eight months of fiscal 2022-23, $15.72 billion from $13.75 billion in July-February FY22, according to the Export Promotion Bureau (EPB). Germany being the largest European market fetched $4.62 billion, marking a 1.03 percent negative growth compared to the same period of the previous year. Apparel exports to France and Spain rose by 27.65 percent ($1.89 billion) and 18.79 percent (2.35 billion), respectively. However, exports to Bulgaria and Poland showed 51.21 percent and 15.06 percent year-on-year negative growth. "During the mentioned period, our exports to the US fell by 2.87 percent year-on-year. However, apparel exports to Canada and the UK saw 20.05 percent and 14.52 percent year-on-year growth, respectively," Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) Director Md Mohiuddin Rubel said. "During the first eight months of FY23, our exports to the US, the UK and Canada were $5.68 billion, $3.36 billion, and $980 million, respectively," he added. "At the same time, exports to the non-traditional markets increased by 35.02 percent to $5.69 billion. Among the major non-traditional markets, our exports to Japan, Australia, India and South Korea reached $1.07 billion, $767.75 million, $753.92 million and $387.63 million, respectively," Rubel said. Also read: 2022 was a year of turning around: BGMEA