Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi has said Bangladesh is expecting trade facilities, including special discounts and duty-free trade from Sweden in the case of Rules of Origin, to continue for another five years after the country's emergence as a developing country in 2024.
Sweden is key business partner of Bangladesh with ample opportunities to increase trade between the two countries. There is also an opportunity to exchange and negotiate (B2B) business between the two countries, said the commerce minister while speaking with Swedish Ambassador to Dhaka, Alexandra Berg von Linde at the Bangladesh Secretariat on Thursday, reads a press release.
Bangladesh is now producing world-class products. Sweden can import Bangladeshi-made garments, as well as medicines, jute and jute products, shrimp and frozen fish, ceramic products, ICT products, leather goods, handicraft products and plastic products. Discussions can be held between the governments of both the countries to resolve any complications in the field of trade, he added.
The commerce minister also said the work of setting up 100 special economic zones in various strategic locations of the country, as initiated by the Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, is progressing fast. Meanwhile, various countries, including China, Korea, Japan, and India have come forward for investment. This region is a key market for products. Swedish investors will benefit from investing in the economic zones in the areas of readymade garments, textiles, agro-processing, leather goods, pharmaceuticals, ceramics, energy, and infrastructural development.
Alexander Berg von Linde said Sweden attaches more importance to Bangladesh in terms of trade. Sweden is interested in increasing trade and investment with Bangladesh, and there are plenty of opportunities to do so. Trade between the two countries needs to be discussed, which. is why Sweden's National Board of Trade is ready for talks.
It is worth noting that in the last 2018-2019 financial year, Bangladesh exported goods worth $696.04 million to Sweden, while it imported goods worth $72.78 million. The trade volume between the two countries was $768.82 million. Due to Covid-19, the trade volume had reduced in the last financial year.
Additional Secretary of the Ministry of Commerce Sharifa Khan; Additional Secretary (Exports) Md Obaidul Azam; Vice Chairman of the Export Development Bureau AHM Ahsan; and Joint Secretary of the Ministry of Commerce (Exports), Md Abdur Rahim were present on the occasion among others.