Bangladesh, US sign trade deal

Ticfa

Bangladesh and the United States signed a trade agreement on Monday in a move Dhaka hoped would bolster a relationship damaged by the deadly collapse of a garment factory earlier this year.

Dhaka’s foreign ministry said the Trade and Investment Cooperation Forum Agreement (TICFA), which was signed in Washington, would pave the way for regular discussion on trade and labour issues in the wake of a series of disasters that highlighted appalling conditions in Dhaka’s $22 billion garment industry.

The US is the biggest destination for Bangladeshi apparel with two-way goods trade between the countries totalling $5.4 billion in 2012, according to the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) website.

Acting Deputy USTR, Wendy Cutler, and Bangladesh Commerce Secretary, Mahbub Ahmed, signed the pact, Dhaka’s foreign ministry spokesman Shameem Ahsan said.

Ahsan quoted USTR Michael Froman as saying that the deal would provide a “formal mechanism” for talks.

The US suspended duty-free trade access to some Bangladeshi products in June in the wake of the Rana Plaza garment factory collapse that killed 1,135 people.

Bangladesh ambassador Akramul Qader called the accord “an opening of a new chapter” in the ties between the two nations and said it would help Dhaka reclaim trade privileges in the US.

“This will pave the way for stronger engagement between the parties to resolve some crucial trade issues” including duty-free and quota-free access to Bangladeshi exports in the US market, Qader said.

Bangladesh has enacted a series of reforms including easing curbs on labour unions and raising the rock-bottom wages of the country’s four million workers in its effort to reclaim trade benefits.

Bangladeshi trade officials have said Washington proposed the deal several years ago, but Dhaka resisted signing the accord due to concerns it could lead to scrutiny of the country’s poor labour and intellectual property laws.

Dhaka’s position reversed after it came under intense pressure from the US and European Union to improve working conditions in the country’s 4,500 garment factories, following the April 24 collapse at Rana Plaza where workers were making clothing for Western brands including top US retailers.

 

 

 

 

Source : Channel News Asia | November 26, 2013

Advertisements

About thomasdinnocenzi

Thomas D’Innocenzi is a highly accomplished, results-focused international consultant with extensive experience in global sourcing and business development worldwide to meet evolving business needs. Tom has proven ability in implementing and managing profitable global marketing and sourcing operations. He has extensive experience in international business development to accommodate rapid growth. Skilled in building top-performing teams, bench-marking performance, and developing organizations to improve efficiency, productivity, and profitability. Experienced transition leader and change agent. Tom founded Nova Advisors with the mission of providing expert Global Business Development consulting services for companies seeking to expand their market share as an independent consultant. Tom has a network of experts and advisors throughout the Asia-Pacific region and North America. His expertise includes business development, global sourcing, manufacturing, commodities, logistics, QA/QC, FDA, regulatory compliance, sustainability, and supply chain optimization. Tom is experienced in the medical device, apparel, consumer goods and technology services verticals helping companies advance their global sourcing capabilities and develop new markets through a local and sustained approach. Located in SE Asia and the United States, Tom expands market reach to drive sales. His global sourcing strategy includes directly negotiating with commodity suppliers, supply chain networks and distributors for optimal terms based on his expertise and first-hand knowledge of the players. Contact Tom to use his consulting service to increase your global market and make global sourcing profitable for you in the Asia Pacific Region and the United States. http://www.NovaAdvisors.com thomas@NovaAdvisors.com USA Direct: +1.904.479.3600 SINGAPORE: +65.6818.6396 THAILAND: +662.207.9269
This entry was posted in Business, Economy, Global Sourcing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s