Now is the right time to sign Bangladesh-Saudi Arabia FTA: FBCCI
Dhaka, November 6, 2023 (BASS): The Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI), the country’s apex trade body, feels that now is the right time to sign a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Bangladesh and Saudi Arabia. Both countries should consider this matter seriously.
During the meeting of FBCCI’s business delegation with the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Saudi Arabia on Monday, FBCCI raised the need for signing a free trade agreement in order to expand trade between the two countries.
FBCCI President Mahbubul Alam said that business and trade patterns are changing all over the world. Along with that, new challenges are coming up. After graduation of LDC by 2026, Bangladesh will also face several challenges. In such a situation, Bangladesh and Saudi Arabia should take the initiative to sign FTA (Free Trade Agreement) now to meet the challenges of the future by exploiting the benefits of integrated supply chain.
Referring to Saudi Arabia as one of Bangladesh’s manpower export destinations, the FBCCI President said that Saudi Arabia has currently taken strong steps towards high-tech infrastructure development and industrial diversification. At this moment they will need a large skilled workforce. Meanwhile Bangladesh is now going through the benefits of “demographic dividend”. That is, the country has a large number of active, experienced and skilled young manpower in science and technology.
He called for expanding employment opportunities for skilled young workers of Bangladesh in various sectors in Saudi Arabia.
In the meeting, Mahbubul Alam called on the businessmen and entrepreneurs of Saudi Arabia to establish the proposed Saudi Arabia Special Economic Zone in Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Industrial City. He also invited Saudi investors to set up industries in other economic areas of the country.
It was informed in the meeting that Saudi Arabia has investment potential in several sectors including environment-friendly energy, infrastructure, car parts, chemicals, food processing, information and communication technology, artificial intelligence and robotics in Bangladesh.
The Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry has assured cooperation in the development of port management in Bangladesh and said that they will also help in organizing the Branding Bangladesh Expo to introduce Bangladeshi products in Saudi Arabia.
FBCCI Vice President Md. was also present at this time. Khairul Huda Chapal, Md. Rashedul Hossain Chowdhury Roni, Md. Munir Hossain, director. Habib Ullah Don, Hasina Newaz, Khandaker Ruhul Amin, Md. Ali Hossain Shishir, Md. Enayet Ullah, BM Soheb, Sahidul Haque Molla, Fakhrus Salehin Nahian, Salma Hossain Ash, Md. Amir Hossain Noorani, Md. Faizur Rahman Bhuiyan, Syed Mohammad Bakhtiar etc.