Narinjara News

Burma to lease out Land to Bangladesh!

Dhaka, 17
th March 03:  The leader of a 16 member business delegation, which will leave Dhaka on March 18, Rashed Maksud Khan, said to business sources that, Burma is even ready to lease land for rice cultivation by Bangladeshi entrepreneurs, quoted BSS.  But he did not mention how could the deal be realized and whether the present system of extortion of the Burmese farmers in the name of forced purchase of rice at deliberately manipulated price and collection system  a longstanding practice by the ruling SPDC Burmese junta - will also be subjected to the ‘entrepreneurs’ of Bangladesh who wish to take the lucrative opportunity especially when the land in Bangladesh is shrinking very fast due to uncontrolled growth in population, a Burmese lawyer in exile here said.

Rashed, a noted industrialist and president of Bangladesh  Myanmar Business Council leaves Dhaka with his delegation preceding Prime Minister Madame Khaleda’s departure for Rangoon on 19th March on a three-day official visit. 

Business sources in Dhaka hope that the entire Bangladesh  Burma trade statistics is set to a wide-ranging change once the proposed bilateral account trade and shipping services agreements are signed while the Bangladesh premiere will be in Rangoon.

A business source in Dhaka told the news service that last year Burma’s total export stood at US$ 171 million, while the official report has been only US$ 16.94 million, as the Burmese export came via Singapore and treated as import from Singapore by Bangladesh.  Export from Bangladesh at the same time stood at over $50 million, while the official statistics refer to only US$2.39 million.  In either case the export from Bangladesh is less than one third of the export from Burma, which is not very rosy and to be happy about though, said an importer available in Dhaka.

Though the trade sector may not be very wholesome, yet newer diplomatic frontiers will open up the deals, he hoped, which will help Bangladesh extend its business beyond Burma and to the Southeast Asian nations.  The sources also said that the ‘Look east’ policy is set to bring newer opportunities for trade and economic developments for Bangladeshs.  The agreement on direct shipping services, which has recently been inaugurated, will finally be extended to Thailand.  The source also added that the revival of road links to Burma would ultimately connect the South Asian country with Southeast Asia, through Thailand

A business house in Chittagong recently exported its first consignment of 10,000 tons of RC coal to a buyer in RangoonBurma imported the item from Japan and Korea previously.  The stalls in the Bangladesh Fair at Rangoon will showcase CR Coal items, toiletries, cables, ceramic products, melamine goods, and software and garment accessories.  Burma’s potential for export mostly contains agro-based products including rice, fish, shrimps, timber and other industrial raw materials. 

Rashed concluded that Burma was once the focal business point and Rangoon was the business hub during the British period, and that ‘Bangladesh wants to rediscover Rangoon’s business potential once again'. #