It is high time to explore business opportunities in Qatar, non-resident Bangladeshis said yesterday.
With its four neighbours having imposed economic and diplomatic embargo, the oil-rich gulf country has drastically opened its market for all seeking to source products and services from around the world, they said.
“Immense opportunities have opened for Bangladeshi businesses,” Israt Ara Younus, founder member of Bangladesh Forum Qatar (BFQ), told a press conference at The Daily Star Centre to announce holding a three-day exhibition from December 10.
The BFQ says it is a business platform registered in Qatar by Bangladeshi professionals and businesspeople working in that country.
The forum and the Bangladesh embassy in Qatar will jointly organise the fair titled “Made in Bangladesh” at Doha Exhibition and Convention Centre to showcase Bangladeshi products and services through around 100 stalls.
Leading Bangladeshi companies focusing agriculture, battery, cement, ceramic, fashion, fintech, fisheries and meat, food and beverage, furniture, leather, pharmaceutical, plastic, real estate, school, hospital, clinic, shipbuilding, textile, toiletries and wire and cable are scheduled to participate.
Qatar is one of the world’s richest countries in terms of per capita GDP and imported about $27 billion worth of products and services in 2017, said Israt.
“Also, around 400,000 non-resident Bangladeshis are contributing to Qatar’s economy, providing a niche market,” she said.
Yusuf Saeed, vice president of the BFQ, said the exhibition would provide Bangladeshi companies the opportunity to have business-to-business meetings with their Qatari counterparts and enable partnership contracts.
“It is a high time for Bangladeshi business communities to tap into the vast opportunities in the Gulf region starting with Qatar,” said Iftekhar Ahmad, the forum president.
“It will not only strengthen the Bangladesh-Qatar economic relationship but also turn Qatar into a partner of Bangladesh,” he added.
Bangladesh currently exports only a few million dollars-worth goods and services to Qatar but has immense potential to export products which have already gained popularity across the world, he added.
Jaafar Ali Al-Sarraf, general manager of Gulf Exchange Company, Qatar, said Bangladeshi companies not only have the opportunity to export to Qatar but also set up joint venture firms.
“Qatar welcomes Bangladeshi businesses to explore it,” said the businessperson. Mir Monirul Huda, the forum’s founding member, also spoke.