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Exports of traditional goods increase

  • Anisul Islam Noor
  • 27 September, 2021 12:00 AM
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Bangladesh’s overall export income has decreased by 0.31 percent in the first two months of the current fiscal year but exports of traditional goods increased during this period.

Traditional products are defined as the items produced from domestic sources and contribute value addition of around 70 percent.

Products such as raw jute, jute goods, leather, leather goods, tea, fish, tobacco, cut flower and foliage, fruits, shrimp, vegetable, raw silk, handicrafts and handloom, spice (local raw material based) knitted fabrics and knitwear fall under the traditional product category.

According to Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) data, Bangladesh exported goods worth $ 6856.5 million in the July-August period of fiscal year (FY) 2021-22, which is 0.31 percent lower than $6878.8 million during the same period of FY21.

However, the demand for traditional goods have increased in the global market during the pandemic, said an EPB official.

Among the traditional goods, frozen and live fish exports grew by 12.9 per cent in the July-August period of FY22. Bangladesh earned $87.97 million by exporting frozen and live fish in July- August of FY22, up from $74.56 million in the same period of FY21. The items were exported mostly to the EU, US and some countries of the Middle East. The share of frozen and live fish in the export sector is 1.28 per cent.

Exports of agricultural products soared by 16.24 per cent during the period. In the July-August period of FY22, the country exported agro-products worth $207.23 million, up from $178.27 million in the same period of FY21. The share of agro products in the export income is around 3.02 per cent. 

Bangladesh exported leather and leather products of $174.71 million in July-August of FY 22 --- a 12.9 per cent rise over $154.74 million recorded in the same period of FY 21. Leather products exports make up 2.55 per cent of the country’s export income.

Jute and jute goods exports hit $127.67 million in the July-August period of FY22 from $195.39 million in the same period of FY21. The share of jute and jute goods is 1.86 per cent in the total export income.

Bangladesh exported knitwear items worth $3258.89 million in the July-August period of FY22, which is 4.63 per cent higher than $3114.78 million reported in the same time of FY21. The contribution of knitwear to the total export volume of the country is 47.53 per cent.

Woven garment exports decreased by 8.33 per cent to $2381.71 million in the July- August period of FY22 from $2598.18 million in the same period of FY21. The share of this sector in the annual export income is 34.78 per cent.

Home textile exports have increased by 4.18 per cent to $175.06 million in July-August of FY22 from $168.03 million in the same time of FY21. The share of this sector in the total export earning is 2.55 per cent.

Bicycle exports have increased by 28.38 per cent to $24.10 million in July-August of FY22 from $18.78 million during the same time of FY21. Exports of other engineering goods dropped by 11.95 per cent to $71.35 million in the July-August period of FY22 from $ 81.03 million in the same period of FY21. Dr. ABM Mirza Azizul Islam, former adviser to a caretaker government, said an increase in the exports of traditional goods will benefit the rural economy.  Abul Kasem Khan, former president of DCCI, said the traditional sector produces a product using domestic raw materials and the income remains in the country.  But a large portion of the income from the exports of non-traditional products is spent on the import of raw materials, he said.