Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) President Md Jashim Uddin said that the private sector should prepare from now on to face the challenges encompassing Bangladesh’s graduation from the LDCs.
He said Bangladesh’s graduation from the Least Developed Country status would bolster the image of the country in the international arena.
“As a result, new paths will be opened in trade while foreign investment will also increase. However, along with these possibilities, several challenges are also waiting for the country’s private sector. The private sector should prepare from now on to face the challenges,” he said.
Jashim said this at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the FBCCI at a Convention Hall in the capital on December 28.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the AGM for the session 2020-2021 could not be held on schedule. As a result, two separate AGMs for the session 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 were held on the same day.
The FBCCI president said that Bangladesh would lose special trade privileges in several markets including Europe, one of the top export destinations of the country, as a result of the LDC graduation.
“The private sector has to face competition in maintaining the price and product quality. This is why emphasis should be given on research, innovation, and product diversification,” he added.
To make the export trading market sustainable, Jashim said the government should initiate signing more bilateral trade agreements including Free Trade Agreements (FTA), Preferential Trade Agreements (PTA).
He also emphasized on obtaining certificates from various institutions, reducing complexity in its renewal, effective automation, and increasing the capacity of port management to attract more foreign investment.
The FBCCI president said that the Covid-19 pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine crisis have resulted in an abnormal increase in energy price, food price, agricultural production cost, industrial raw materials, parts, and transportation cost.
He said high inflation is also affecting the currency exchange rates adding that rising cost of doing business have made it difficult for local entrepreneurs to survive in the global competition.
In such situation, he suggested that the private sector should focus on increasing the use of technology in the industry, creating a skilled workforce, increasing efficiency in business management, and increasing the capacity to produce goods at competitive prices.
In the ongoing situation, the FBCCI President urged the District Chambers and Associations to be more proactive to maintain productivity. At the same time, he suggested identifying sector-wise problems and bringing them up at the policy-making level through FBCCI.
He also mentioned that a three-day long programme has been organized to celebrate the golden jubilee of the FBCCI.