Narinjara news

Source: the daily star,
March 25, 2002,


Against the backdrop of worst ever crisis facing the country's export sector a weeklong Bangladesh festival kicks off in Yangon tomorrow aiming to boost trade ties with Myanmar.

With the country's export missing the target by over US $ 648 million in the first seven months of the current fiscal, some 60 Bangladeshi companies have arrived in Myanmar capital to showcase their products and explore the market here.

Commerce Minister Amir Khosru Mahmud chowdhury along with over 150 business delegates arrived here yesterday to launch the festival.

Amir Khosru Mahmud Chowdhury will jointly inaugurate the largest ever Bangladesh event in Yangon with his Myanmar counterpart Brigadier General Pyi Sone.

Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) President Yussuf Abdullah Harun, Dhaka Chambers of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) President Motiur Rahman, Chitagong Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) President Farid Ahmad Chowdhury, Women's Entrepreneurs Association President Nasreen Awal Mintoo, Women's Chamber President Selima Ahmed, Bangladesh Myanmar Business promotion Council President Rashed Maksud khan, Bangladesh- Myanmar Business Promotion Council Vice President Syed Mahmudul Huq and Export promotion Bureau (FPB) Vice Chairman Abu Saleh, among other, are included in the Bangladesh delegation.

Addressing a press conference at a city hotel Khosru said the idea of the festival is to bring business community of both the countries together for boosting trade between the two countries.

" Though the fair we will also reach common people of Myanmar apart from making business proposition," Aamir Khosru said.

He said both the countries have a lot to share among themselves but failed even to scratch the surface. " And with that in mind, Bangladesh this time has taken a different approach, as we hold food festival, cultural shows, fashion shows, seminar and even golf tournament throughout the week.

Speaking on the occasion FBCCI President Yussuf Abdullah Harun said Myanmar is very important being the meeting point of SAARC and ASEAN countries. He said the trade figures between the two countries do not reflect healthy trade relations and so should explore more avenues to the ties.

Bangladesh-Myanmar Business Promotion Council President Rashed Maksud Khan said there had been exchange of delegations between the two countries which failed to yield expected results. " But after our visit we hope to see better trade figures."

Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) President Motiur Rahman said there are few problems that stand in way of improving trade between the two countries and these should be addressed.

CCCI President Farid Ahmad Chowdhury stressed the need for setting up of a visa office in Chitttagong so that businessmen from Chittagong can frequently visit Myanmar. He also called for opening of a direct flight from Myanmar to chittagong, besides facilities for opening direct letters of credit with Myanmar, Which is currently routed from Singapore.#