| DHAKA, April 19
DHAKA, April 19 Bangladesh aims to raise its
exports of readymade garments (RMG) to Canada at least fivefold
to $3.5 billion by 2021, the chief of the Canada Bangladesh
Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CanCham Bangladesh) said on
Masud Rahman said total Bangladeshi exports to Canada stood
at $1.1 billion in the fiscal year to June 2014, making it the
fifth biggest market for the Asian country. Of that figure, RMG
- Bangladesh's main export - totalled $770 million.
"The country aims to increase the value of its RMG exports
(globally) to $50 billion by 2021 when it will become a middle
income country," Masud told reporters after talks with leading
international RMG buyers.
Official data show Bangladesh earned $30.18 billion from
global exports in the last fiscal year, with RMG making up 81
percent of that figure. The United States, Germany, Britain and
France ranked ahead of Canada as the biggest export markets.
In Sunday's talks, the buyers suggested measures to increase
Bangladeshi exports to North America, including securing power
supplies, boosting productivity, lowering bank rates to cut
production costs and reducing delivery times.
Beniot Pierre Laramee, High Commissioner of Canada in
Bangladesh, told reporters Bangladeshi exports, especially RMG,
to his country had increased steadily since Ottawa allowed them
duty-free access in 2003.
Masud urged greater Canadian direct investment - currently
just $300 million - into the economy of Bangladesh, which has
grown by about six percent annually for more than a decade and
is projected to expand by 7.2 percent in this financial year.
(Editing by Gareth Jones)