July 29, 2019 | Issue 227


Pharma exports soar 26%

Bangladesh’s medicine exports soared 25.60% year-on-year to $130 million last fiscal year thanks to continuous improvement of product quality and government support. The sector has built up skilled manpower and improved quality and at the same time more effort is being put to win the global market. According to BAPI, Bangladesh exports pharma products to 144 countries and caters to 97% of the domestic market. In 2017, the per capita consumption of medicine in Bangladesh was about $15.36. Currently, Bangladesh has the ability to produce advanced medicines such as bio-similar drugs, vaccines and oncology products as well as medical devices.

Exporters get a boost

Exporters will now be able to issue the certificate of origin to enjoy the generalised system of preferences (GSP) facility in the European Union, instead of relying on the Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) for the document. This will allow exporters to enjoy the GSP benefit quickly after sending a shipment. A certificate of origin is an important international trade document that certifies that goods in a particular export shipment are wholly obtained, produced, manufactured or processed in a particular country. It also serves as a declaration by the exporter.

Bangladesh, Malta to work together for benefit of citizens

Bangladesh and Malta have agreed to begin a “new era of cooperation” in bilateral relations to achieve “concrete benefits” for the two peoples, the foreign ministry says. This was agreed between Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen and Maltese Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Promotion Carmelo Abela during the first-ever official talks held in Maltese capital Valetta. They exchanged views on issues of mutual interests, with particular emphasis on enhanced economic cooperation by building partnerships in areas like maritime sector and blue economy.

Remittance inflow hits all-time high

Remittance transfer through legal channels marked a sharp rise thanks to the government’s incentive and growing popularity of mobile banking services. The country’s remittance inflow hit an all-time high at $16.40 billion in the just-concluded fiscal year. Economists also attributed the upward trend to the government’s initiative to provide incentive on remittance transfer to help keep a stable exchange rate. Remittance inflow in FY 2018-19 was almost 9.47% higher than FY 2017-18, according to central bank data.

Bangladesh invents green throw-away bags from jute

As countries around the world try to cut down on throw-away plastic shopping bags, Bangladesh is hoping to cash in on an alternative: plastic-like bags made from jute, the plant fibre used to produce burlap bags, says a report of the Thomson Reuters Foundation. Now a Bangladeshi scientist has found a way to turn the fibre into low-cost biodegradable cellulose sheets that can be made into greener throw-away bags that look and feel much like plastic ones. Bangladesh is now producing 2,000 of the bags a day on an experimental basis, but plans to scale up commercial production after signing an agreement last October with the British arm of a Japanese green packaging firm.

$6.21bn foreign fund released in FY ’19

Foreign fund inflow against development projects continued a bullish trend in the just-concluded fiscal year as well after crossing a $6 billion threshold for the first time in FY’18. The country received US$ 6.21 billion as foreign fund from development partners in FY’19, including $5.94 billion as loans and US$ 256 million grants, suggest provisional data from Economic Relations Division (ERD). The last fiscal amount disbursed was $150 million or 2.5% lower than FY’18s final disbursement of $6.37 billion that witnessed a 73.57% surge over $3.67 billion fund released in FY’17.

ADB official brands BD 'role model' of growth

Asian Development Bank (ADB) Country Director Manmohan Parkash branded Bangladesh as a 'role model' in the globe in terms of the country's economic growth. "Bangladesh is an emerging country. The GDP (Gross Domestic Product) growth of the country is also growing. It is the role model in the world," he was quoted by media as saying. "Bangladesh will be the top GDP growth achiever among the South Asian countries in 2019," he said, assuring the development bank's support to the country's economic development through facilitating the development works, especially in the transport sector.

23, Bangabandhu Avenue, Dhaka-1000. Bangladesh.

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