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Trade share of Bangladesh with Africa remarkably low

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The trade share of Bangladesh with Africa is remarkably low due to lack of preferential trade agreements and free trade agreements, tariff and non-tariff barriers and infrastructural issues despite the continent holding huge investment opportunities, speakers at a webinar in Dhaka recently said.

Planning minister MA Mannan said Bangla entrepreneurs are gradually entering Africa.

The webinar on ‘Trade & Investment Cooperation of Africa and Bangladesh: Towards a New Trajectory’ was held on the 5th day of Bangladesh Trade & Investment Summit 2021, organised by the Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI).

“The private sector needs to be aggressive to invest both at home and abroad. Food processing and agriculture have good prospects there [in Africa],” Manna was quoted as saying by a DCCI press release.

“Our trade with Africa is significantly low compared to other regions. Bangladesh exports only to five-six countries of Africa. Their high import tariff is an obstacle to increasing export. But, the services sector is a potential sector for investment,” AHM Ahsan, vice chairman and chief executive officer, Export Promotion Bureau (EPB), said.

“The African investment in Bangladesh was recorded only $306 million. Bangladesh may invest in the manufacturing and agricultural sectors of some African countries. Bangladeshi investors can invest in African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) and can expand export to the US market for strategic market sustenance,” DCCI president Rizwan Rahman said.

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