Improved connectivity to boost bilateral trade between India and Bangladesh
Bangladesh is sending a strong buyer delegation to India during the upcoming Indus Food-II to be held in January, 2019, in Greater Noida, organized jointly with Department of Commerce, Ministry of Commerce and Industry. This was announced by Jahangir Bin Alam, Secretary & CEO of Dhaka-based India-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce & Industry (IBCCI), who visited Trade Promotion Council of India (TPCI) office in Delhi yesterday for talks. The bilateral trade between the two countries touches $9 billion out of which Bangladesh exports goods worth $900 million.
CEO, IBCCI said that trade growth depends on the developmental progress of Bangladesh. He further said that Bangladesh is growing and hence trade is increasing with India and the rest of the world. India being an immediate neighbour with whom Bangladesh not only shares a long border but also culture, traditions and language will be looking towards India to import the items it needs.
There is immense scope for increasing Food & Beverages (F&B) exports from India to Bangladesh. Presently, Bangladesh’s total import of F&B from the world is $5016.4 million, out of which India is 5th in ranking with exports worth $332.4 million. Bangladesh currently sources 17.2 % of its F&B requirements from Brazil, followed by Indonesia (12.1%), Canada (9.7%), Argentina (9.1%) and India (6.6%).
Fresh fruits going from India to Bangladesh are: mangoes, grapes, pomegranates and apples. Among other F&B products, there is still great scope for added export of dried, shelled chickpeas, fresh or chilled onions and shallots, food preparations, cumin seeds, fresh grapes, semi-milled or wholly milled rice, black fermented tea and partly fermented tea, turmeric and cane sugar.
Improved connectivity between the two countries will help a lot in developing trade further. Till only a sometime back, maximum trade between India and Bangladesh was routed through ports in Singapore. The traditional river waterways that connected various cities in Bangladesh to India were operational till 1965. The recent thrust to rebuild those waterways and develop new routes to ease connectivity will not only be in the interest of bilateral trade between India and Bangladesh, but will also help Indian mainland to connect better with its own North Eastern States.
Indusfood is being billed as the World Food Supermarket – a one-stop event to source all requirements related to food and beverage from India.