2018-10-08 12:47:19 BdST

Canada keen to boost trade ties with Bangladesh


Canadian High Commissioner Benoit Prefontaine said on Sunday that his country wants to enhance trade relations with Bangladesh.

"Canada keen to develop trade relations with Bangladesh," he said at a meeting with the board of directors of the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) at its office in the capital.

He also suggested holding regular meetings among the private sectors of the two countries for mutual benefits.

As the existing trade is not satisfactory and much potential remains untapped, Canadian businessmen are coming to Bangladesh more than before to increase the bilateral trade, the envoy added.

Terming Bangladesh a significant trade partner of Canada, he stressed the need for more vibrant activities of Canada-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce.

At the meeting, the FBCCI urged the envoy to consider reopen the Canadian visa consular office in Dhaka.

FBCCI President Md Shafiul Islam (Mohiuddin) apprised the Canadian envoy of the private sector's role in the fast-growing development activities of the country.

The FBCCI along with its member bodies have been working with the government to ensure a business-friendly environment in the country, he added.

He thanked the Canadian high commissioner for their cooperation regarding duty-free export facility for Bangladeshi RMG products to Canada.

Mr. Mohiuddin invited the Canadian businessmen to invest in potential sectors like leather, pharmaceuticals, information and communication technology (ICT) and tourism.

Canadian investors can avail the opportunity of investing in the special economic zones in Bangladesh, he said.

Senior vice president of FBCCI Sheikh Fazle Fahim sought technological and curriculum-related assistance from Canada to develop the 'FBCCI Private Institute', which was recently set up to create demand-driven human resources as per market needs.

He also suggested forming working groups of business people to work on the potential sectors of both the countries.

Bangladesh mainly exports woven garments, knitwear, home textiles and footwear to Canada and imports vegetable products, machinery and mechanical appliances and textiles and textile articles.

Bangladesh exported goods worth US$1118.72 million to Canada and imported goods amounting to $498.20 million during fiscal year 2017-18.

Counsellor (Commercial Affairs) of Canadian embassy Corinne Petrisor, trade commissioner of Canadian High Commission Md Kamal Uddin and acting secretary general of FBCCI Hussain Jamil were present at the meeting.

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