Narinjara news



Bangladesh and Myanmar have agreed to form a joint economic council to remove barriers that stand in the way of trade between the two neighbouring countries.

The decision came at a meeting between the visiting Bangladesh trade delegation led by Commerce Minister Amir Khosru Mahmud Chowdhury and Myanmar's highest policy making body state Development Council Secretary-1 Lt General Khin Nyunt on Thursday.

The joint economic council will meet every years, Khosru said whiling talking to journalists.

Both the countries also agreed to introduce ' account trade ' and ' counter trade' to facilitate improved trade, he said.

Explaining it, the commerce minister said under the account and counter trade arrangements, the Myanmar businessmen will keep the money they receive through export of goods to Bangladesh in an account for importing similar amount of goods from Bangladesh by using money. " And similarly our exporters will also keep their sale proceeds for importing from Myanmar."

Currently, due to foreign exchange crisis the Myanmar government does not allow opening of direct letters to credits (LCs). The LCs are mostly opened by third parties from other countries like Japan and Singapore.

" We also discussed on the formation of a standing committee for resolving issues relating to border trade which crop up time to time," the commerce minister said speaking on the outcome of his four-day visit Myanmar.

Commerce Minister Amir Shosru Mamud Chowhury and his Myanmar counterpart Brigadier General Pyi Sone also jointly inaugurated weeklong Bangladesh trade fair on the day at Yangon Trade Centre in Mingala Taungnyunt township here. The fair will conclude on Saturday.

The two ministers urged the businessmen of the two countries to come forward in boosting bilateral trade sections.

Some 60 Bangladeshi companies are participating in the fair to showcase their products to explore the market of the next-door neighbour. A Bangladesh cultural team is also holding shows here.
Prior to leaving the Myanmar capital, Khosru termed his four-day mission ' a very successful one'. He said the turnout at the fair is good and Bangladeshi goods are in great demand in Myanmar.

Earlier on Monday Khasru addressed a seminar titled Prospects of Myanmar-Bangladesh Bilateral Trade at the information and communication Technology park auditorium. Leading businessmen of Myanmar attended the seminar.#

Source: the daily star, 28 March,02, Dhaka