The exports of apparel items noticed a modest growth in the top destinations in the first three months (July-September) or first quarter (Q1) of the current fiscal year (FY2022-23).
According to the country-wise detailed apparel export data of the Export Promotion Bureau (EPB), the apparel export of Bangladesh was $10.27 billion, fetching a growth of 13.41%, from $9.05 billion in July-September of FY22.
In the mentioned period, Bangladeshi apparel manufacturers shipped apparel items worth $2.01 billion to the US, the largest single export destination for Bangladesh, fetching a thin year-on-year growth of 5.13%, from $1.1 billion in the same period of the last FY (Q1 of FY22).
In Q1 of FY23, they exported RMG worth $1.51 billion to Germany, the second largest single export destination, registering a narrow growth of 1.34% from $1.49 billion in the same period of the last FY.
Registering a medium growth of 15.64%, Bangladesh exported apparel items worth $1.19 billion to the UK, the third highest destination for the country’s RMG products, up from last year’s $1.03 billion, EPB data said.
The apparel export to the other major destinations such as Spain, France, Netherlands, and Italy also registered a modest positive growth by 21.35% to $842.45 million, by 36.72% to $576.49 million, by 33.65% to $421.63 million, and by 20.51% to $369.87 million, respectively, where in Poland, export marked a negative growth of 24.49% to 293.83 million.
During the mentioned period, the apparel export to the overall EU market soared by 12.43% to $4.94 billion from $4.39 billion in the same period of the last fiscal year.
During Q1 of FY2022-23, exports to Canada reached $334.65 million fetching a YoY growth of 17.4% from $285.04 million of the Q1 of FY22.
The apparel export to the non-traditional markets reached $1.79 billion with 25.47% year-over-year growth, from $1.43 billion of the same period of the last FY.
Among the major destinations of the non-traditional markets, exports to Japan reached $320.4 million, with a YoY growth of 16.6% from $274.8 million in the last fiscal year.
From India, Bangladesh bagged $306.39 million in the Q1 of FY22-23, registering a growth of 66.20% from $184.34 million in July-September of the last fiscal year.
Among the major destinations of the non-traditional markets, export to Australia, South Korea, and Mexico increased by 14.21% to $214.71 million, by 49.84% to $131.1 million, and by 45.11% to $85.49 million, respectively, said the EPB data.
However, exporters said that though export earnings soared in Q1 of FY23, they experienced a narrow or sluggish growth rate, signaling to them something alarming in the coming months.
They have reasons for pessimism and the reasons are many the sector earned $3.16 billion in only September, fetching a low YoY growth of 7.52%, which was $3.41 billion in the September of the last fiscal year.