Commerce minister Tofail Ahmed on Wednesday called on Brazil to provide duty- and quota-free access of Bangladeshi products to that country for reducing the trade gap between the states.
He made the call in a meeting with Brazil ambassador Wanja Campos da Nóbrega at the secretariat in the capital Dhaka.
High duty on Bangladeshi products in Brazil has been hindering the country’s export growth in Brazil despite having ample opportunity, Tofail said, while talking to reporters after the meeting.
In last year, Bangladesh’s import from Brazil was worth $952.30 million, while Brazil’s import was worth $135.60 million from Bangladesh meaning that trade gap between the countries remains high, he said.
‘Once the duty- and quota-free facility is introduced, our trade gap with Brazil will reduce,’ said Tofail.
‘Bangladesh as a least developed country deserves duty- and quota-free access of its products to Brazil under the World Trade Organisation’s decision,’ he said.
Many developed and developing countries are giving the opportunity to Bangladesh, but Brazil is yet to follow them, the commerce minister said.
Seeking Bangladesh’s support for Brazilian Roberto Azevedo for the post of WTO secretary general in the upcoming election, Nóbrega said there was ample scope of increasing trade and business relations between the two countries and Brazil was very keen in this regard.
Mentioning Brazilian government’s sympathetic consideration regarding duty- and quota-free facility for Bangladesh, the Brazilian ambassador
said it required a number of formalities and some time.
He also mentioned that the Brazilian government would take steps in offering the duty- and quota-free facility to Bangladesh.
Former caretaker government advisor Tapan Chowdhury and commerce secretary Hedayetullah Al Mamoon were also present at the meeting.
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