The leaders of Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) recently took part in a cloud conference titled, ‘Bilateral Trade and Investment Opportunities in the Ongoing Global Pandemic and Beyond’ with the Durban Chamber of Commerce and Industries (DCCI) of South Africa.
Oportunities on trade and investment between Bangladesh and South Africa were highlighted in the event.
Sheikh Fazle Fahim, President of FBCCI; Mr. Siddiqur Rahman, Vice Presisdent, FBCCI; Mr. Nigel Ward, the President of DCCI; and Palesa Phili the CEO of DCCI addressed the cloud conference discussing collaboration to boost both economies in a post-pandemic world.
Thanking the Durban Chamber for its cooperation the FBCCI President stated, “This year marks the 100th birth centenary of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. Today’s program commemorates his legacy and is a part of our ongoing international engagements with 129 globally strategic partner organizations in 51 countries.
Highlighting the bilateral trade in FY 2019-20 that amounted for US$24 million between the two nations he underlined prospects that the two apex trade bodies can pursue together in Pharma, ICT, FMCG, home Appliances, while also proposing to improve the banking, shipping and communication channels to complement trade growth.
Highlighting FBCCI’s advocacies in its continuous engagements in complement to the government’s response he said, “As we navigate the next normal, we are confident in our economy as it is demonstrating strong recovery trend with GDP growth and remittance growth, FOREX reserve growth. We successfully solicited targeted roadmap to recovery in a broad spectrum of socio-economic agenda through proactive advocacies with both our national and international stakeholders.
Highlighting Bangladesh’s success and development even during an unprecedented pandemic Fahim further stated, “Comparing compliant markets and transitioning economies like Bangladesh’s ROI makes us an attractive destination with IP protection in place for technology transfer. South African investors can tap into Bangladesh’s production competitive edge, domestic consumer base, regional market access that is Duty Free Quota Free (DFQF) to India, China, EU, Canada, Australia, APTA, etc.”
“Utilizing on incentives we are also keen in exploring bilateral value chain initiative through joint ventures in mining, electronics, automobile and motorbike industry component manufacturing, agriculture, fisheries and blue economy cooperation, service cooperation in shipping, tourism, higher learning, and finance,” he added.
Underscoring the importance of two-way investment and access to markets the President of DCCI said, “At the Durban Chamber, we have the capacity and the willingness to connect our members to the members of the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI). I look forward to our two organizations reigniting our MOA to reflect few but concrete and achievable projects that will make a real and mutual difference for our members.
Specifying a few sectors of interest, the CEO of DCCI stated, “Facilitating international business for our members is one of the core mandates of the Durban Chamber and we are glad to see the opportunities that exist for our members in Bangladesh in to facilitating some concrete business matchmaking going forward.
Going forward, it will be important for the technical trade and investment teams from DCCI and FBCCI to collaborate and rebuild a more robust and practical agreement between us,” she added.
The President of FBCCI further assured of reverting back to DCCI on how they can engage together on a concrete manner in areas of shipbuilding, automobile industry, chemical and ocean economy.