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New markets add value in apparel export

busi-fGraph_1The country’s apparel exporters gradually penetrating into new markets thanks to their efforts in diversifying markets – a strategy to reduce dependence on the traditional market that often poses threat to the industry.

The apparel exports to the non-traditional markets registered a sharp growth by over 37% to US$1.37bn in the first half of the current fiscal year, braving the political turmoil throughout the year.

The manufacturers had earlier exported apparel products worth $977m during the same period (July-December) in 2012.

The comparatively new markets include Australia, Brazil, Chile, China, India, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Russia, South Africa and Turkey.

Export to Turkey registered the highest growth as the value stood at $335m with a rise of 106.5% in the first half of the current financial year. It was followed by Russia 73%, Chile 32%, China 60%, India 53%. Only Brazil registered a negative growth by 4% to $89m compared to previous export value of $93m.

“The increased exports to the non-traditional markets will reduce to some extent the overwhelming dependency on the traditional markets,??? exporters said.

The robust growth has been possible mainly because of the all-out efforts made by Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) and Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BKMEA) to explore new destinations for the apparel products, said Faruque Hassan, former vice president of BGMEA.

“BGMEA and BKMEA had launched such a move to explore non-traditional markets in 2010 and the move is still on,’’ he said.

He said duty-free access to some markets and government cash incentives for searching new destinations for RMG products have finally yielded positive results in the previously unexplored market.

If the government increases the cash incentives to 5% from existing 2%, it would help this sector to expand the exports further in the new markets, he added.

“Sharp export growth to those markets is not unexpected as we had been successfully able to introduce our products to them through our participation in various exhibitions across the globe,??? Shubhashish Bose, vice president of Export Promotion Bureau (EPB), told the Dhaka Tribune.

“We will continue our drive to reach still untouched and unexplored markets.???

Meanwhile, the country’s export to the major European Union countries also rose to over $7bn in July-December period of last year, which is 21.10% higher compared to the same period in previous year 2012.

Export to USA also rose to$2.5bn, a 13.25% rise compared to the value of $2.27bn of 2012.

Apart from that, Bangladeshi RMG products has fetched $499m from Canada, which is also 4.13% higher comparing to $479m earnings in the year 2012.

Apparel sector, the highest foreign currency earner,has also met around 50% target of $24bn set for the fiscal year-2013-14.

The country’s export earnings rose 16.6% to US$14.68bn in the first half of the current fiscal year, compared to $12.6bn in the July-December period of 2012.

RMG export posted over 20% growth to nearly $12bn in the first half of the current fiscal year compared to the same period of last year’s value of $10bn.

Report: Ibrahim Hossain Ovi
Source: Dhaka Tribune

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