Oct exports grow 18pc | The Daily Star
11:00 PM, December 09, 2009 / LAST MODIFIED: 11:00 PM, December 09, 2009

Oct exports grow 18pc

Garment leaders look to bleak future

Export earnings posted 18 percent growth in October, compared to the same month last fiscal year.
In October last year, exports dipped 7.48 percent when the impact of global financial crisis was felt for the first time in the country's export sector.
According to provisional statistics of Export Promotion Bureau (EPB), exports fetched $1.024 billion in October of current fiscal year, while the earnings were $0.87 billion in the same month last year.
Bangladesh logged $0.9 billion in earnings in October of fiscal 2007-08.
Although detailed figures are not available, people concerned said the overall export in October shows a growing trend because of a rise in readymade garment export ahead of Christmas.
Despite growth, the monthly earnings in October fell 19.51 percent short of the $1.3 billion strategic export target set for the month.
Also, exports in the July-October period of the current fiscal year declined 6.79 percent compared to the same period a year ago, as the sector sustained a major blow of the late impact of global financial meltdown.
Bangladesh earned $4.9 billion in the first four months of the current fiscal year, while the figure was $5.3 billion in the same period last year. Earnings during the time also fell 12.62 percent short of $5.6 billion strategic export target.
Although export earnings were showing dismal figures from the beginning of the year, EPB officials said they are optimistic about reaching this year's export target.
"Export earnings in the months to come will increase as the global economy is showing some signs of recovery," said an EPB official.
Bangladesh has set a $17.6 billion export target for the current fiscal year targeting a 13 percent growth. Earning in the previous year was $15.6 billion with a 10.31 percent growth.
Fazlul Hoque, president of Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association, said he saw no immediate signs of hope in RMG export growth.
"The government initiatives to explore new markets will make a positive impact on RMG export but it will take a long time to happen," he added.
Abdus Salam Murshedy, president of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association, said the future seemed bleak although export earnings increased to some extent ahead of Christmas.
"We will not be able to gather pace in RMG export unless the government ensures a smooth supply of power and gas," said Murshedy, urging the government to give more subsidy to diesel used in power generation at industrial units during outage.
"As power generators add additional costs, we lose competitiveness in the global market," he said.
He also expressed doubt about achieving this year's export target.

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