Exports continue to bring cheers
Exports accelerated 9.27 percent year-on-year to $2.83 billion in March on the back of higher shipments of garment, leather and leather goods, and jute and jute goods.
March's receipts are a drop of 0.7 percent over the previous month, when $2.85 billion was received. But it beat the month's target by 0.3 percent, according to the Export Promotion Bureau.
Garment, which typically accounts for 80 percent of the export earnings, brought home $2.32 billion, up 11.54 percent year-on-year but a decline of 1.69 percent from February.
"So far, we have had good growth in export, but earnings in future might not be bright due to troubles in Europe, our main export destination," said Siddiqur Rahman, president of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association.
Nearly 60 percent of the shipments are destined for the European Union. The region took delivery on $15.9 billion of garment items last fiscal year.
Bangladesh's garment exports to the European Union have been affected by the recent wave of terror attacks, he said, adding that the ban on direct air cargo from Dhaka to the UK has also impacted shipments.
March's figures take the total export earnings in the first nine months of fiscal 2015-16 to $24.96 billion, which is an increase of 8.95 percent from a year earlier.
During the period, jute and jute goods fetched $641.58 million, down 1.72 percent year-on-year, data shows.
Leather and leather goods received $851.33 million, an increase of 2.77 percent from a year earlier. Footwear brought $165.40 million, up 21.94 percent.
Export earnings from headgear more than doubled in the first nine months of the fiscal year to $99.15 million.
Pharmaceutical products, a promising export item for the country, brought $61.66 million between July and March, up 13.78 percent from a year earlier.
The government has set an export target of $33.5 billion for the fiscal year.