Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed on Sunday hinted that bilateral trade between Bangladesh and Canada is likely to reach US$ 5 billion by 2021. Trade between the two countries stood at $1.7 billion in last fiscal year.
The minister was addressing the inaugural session of the 4th Showcase Canada 2018 trade and education fair at International Convention City Bashundhara in the capital on Sunday.Canada Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce (CBCC) organised the showcase, in support with Canadian High Commission in Dhaka, aimed at expanding bilateral relations between the two countries, particularly in the fields of trade and education.
Tofail pointed out that Bangladesh RMG exports to Canada increased substantially soon after the country (Canada) provided duty free access to Bangladesh exports. Bangladesh has been given duty free market access of all items to Canada since 2003 under Canada’s General Preferential Tariff Scheme for LDC’s.
Tofail pointed out that Bangladesh is developing 100 special economic zones across the country for both local and foreign investors urging them to avail the opportunity. Bangladesh, he said, offers one of the most liberal investment policies and attractive packages of fiscal, financial and other incentives to foreign entrepreneurs.
The minister also appreciated the initiative of holding the trade and education fair which, he said, will help promote trade and education between the two countries.
Terming Canada as one of the trusted and good friends he said that the country recognised the Bangladesh independence as early as on 14 February, 1972.
Higher Commissioner of Canada in Banglasesh Benoit Prefontaine, Director General for South Asia, Global Affairs Canada David Hartman also spoke on the inaugural ceremony. Keith O’Brien, Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada, High Commission of Canada conducted the programme.The high commissioner said that through this fair people of the two countries will be liked with one another and promote and expand trade and business.
Later, the minister visited the exhibition stalls set up by different educational intuitions of Canada that provide information to facilitate higher education in Canada.