SME Times News Bureau | 04 Oct, 2019
India and Bangladesh are not competitors but
collaborators in making both countries prosperous and ensuring a better future
for their people said Union Minister of Commerce & Industry Piyush Goyal at
the India - Bangladesh Business Forum held on Friday in New Delhi.
The Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina,
was also present in the India - Bangladesh Business Forum meeting.
Goyal urged Indian industry to be part of
Bangladesh’s growth story with greater investment in infrastructure, technology
and energy where Bangladesh has huge potential. This will help to create more
balanced trade between the two countries added Piyush Goyal.
He assured the visiting Prime Minister that India
stands committed to every request that Bangladesh has in railways sector
because the connectivity that the expansion in railways will bring to both
countries will boost trade and also give greater and smoother access to the
North East region of India.
Bangladesh Prime Minister thanked the Government
of India and the three Chambers of Commerce and Industry for giving this
opportunity to the Bangladesh Government and Industry to interact with Indian
Bangladesh Prime Minister informed that three
Special Economic Zones have been set up in Bangladesh for Indian investors and
hoped that this will broaden the export base of Bangladesh.
On this occasion two Government to Business (G2B)
MoUs were signed between Start up Bangladesh and Tech Mahindra and Bangladesh
Economic Zones Authority and Adani Ports and SEZs.
Bangladesh is India’s biggest trade partner in
South Asia. Bilateral trade between India and Bangladesh has grown steadily
over the last decade.
India’s exports to Bangladesh for the financial
year 2018-19 (April-March) stood at USD 9.21 billion and imports from
Bangladesh for the same period stood at USD 1.22 billion.
India and Bangladesh have trade agreement which
is facilitative in nature.
India and Bangladesh are members of various
regional trade agreements including the Asia Pacific Trade Agreement (APTA),
SAARC Preferential Trade Agreement (SAPTA) and the Agreement on South Asian
Free Trade Area (SAFTA) which govern the tariff regimes for trade. Under SAFTA,
India has granted duty free quota free access to Bangladesh on all items except
alcohol and tobacco.
Various bilateral institutional mechanisms
including Commerce Secretary Level Meeting, Shipping Secretary Level Talks,
Joint Working Groups on Trade, Customs and Fisheries and Sub-groups on Banking
and LCS/ICP Infrastructure meet regularly.
Four Border Haats, two each in Tripura (Srinagar
and Kamalasagar) and Meghalaya (Kalaichar and Balat), have been established for
the benefit of communities living along the border areas of both countries. Ten
additional Border Haats on the India-Bangladesh border are under
Cumulative Foreign Direct Investment from India
to Bangladesh has more than doubled from USD 243.91 million in 2014 to USD
570.11 million in December 2018.
Indian companies have invested in various sectors
including telecommunications, pharmaceuticals, FMCG and automobiles sectors in
Bangladesh. During Bangladesh Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina’s visit in April
2017, 13 agreements worth around USD 10 billion of Indian investment mainly in
power and energy sectors in Bangladesh were signed.
Bangladesh is the biggest development partner of
India today. India has extended 3 Lines of Credits (LOCs) to Bangladesh in the
last 8 years amounting to USD 8 billion.