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India-Bangladesh bilateral trade to witness significant increase with improved connectivity

 

20132151417354401_fu_ben_Come January, India-Bangladesh would see huge interactions at “Indus Food-II” event, scheduled to take place in January, 2019, in Greater Noida (UP) in NCR Delhi area. Bangladesh is sending a strong buyer delegation to India during this event jointly organized with Department of Commerce, Ministry of Commerce and Industry. Confirming their participation Mr Jahangir Bin Alam, Secretary & CEO of Dhaka-based India-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce & Industry (IBCCI), who recently visited Trade Promotion Council of India (TPCI) office in Delhi, pointed out that bilateral trade between the two countries touches $9 billion out of which Bangladesh exports goods worth $900 million.

According to Mr Alam,trade growth depends on the developmental progress of Bangladesh. “Bangladesh is growing and hence trade is increasing with India and the rest of the world. India being an immediate neighbour with whom Bangladesh not only shares a long border but also culture, traditions and language will be looking towards India to import the items it needs,” he emphasised.

In his opinion, there is immense scope for increasing Food & Beverages (F&B) exports from India to Bangladesh. Presently, Bangladesh’s total import of F&B from the world is $5016.4 million, out of which India is 5th in ranking with exports worth $332.4 million. Bangladesh currently sources 17.2 % of its F&B requirements from Brazil, followed by Indonesia (12.1%), Canada (9.7%), Argentina (9.1%) and India (6.6%).

At present, fresh fruits going from India to Bangladesh are: mangoes, grapes, pomegranates and apples.  Among other F&B products, there is still great scope for added export of dried, shelled chickpeas, fresh or chilled onions and shallots, food preparations, cumin seeds, fresh grapes, semi-milled or wholly milled rice, black fermented tea and partly fermented tea, turmeric and cane sugar.

According to the Ministry of Commerce, Government of India  sources, improved connectivity between the two countries will help a lot in developing trade further. Till only a sometime back, maximum trade between India and Bangladesh was routed through ports in Singapore. The traditional river waterways that connected various cities in Bangladesh to India were operational till 1965. The recent thrust to rebuild those waterways and develop new routes to ease connectivity will not only be in the interest of bilateral trade between India and Bangladesh, but will also help Indian mainland to connect better with its own North Eastern States.

“Indus Food” is being billed as the World Food Supermarket – a one-stop event to source all requirements related to food and beverage from India.

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