Bangladesh-Indonesia trade to expand fivefold in ten years: experts

Staff Correspondent | Published: 00:00, Apr 27,2019 | Updated: 23:04, Apr 26,2019


Bilateral trade between Bangladesh and Indonesia would increase by fivefold to around $10 billion in next 10 years as the trade between the two countries grew by 48 per cent in 2014-2018, said experts.
They came up with the prediction while addressing at a discussion titled ‘Indonesia-Bangladesh Business and Investment Forum’ at International Convention City, Bashundhara in Dhaka.
The discussion was organised as part of the three-day Indonesia Fair 2019, second of its kind, holding at ICCB in the city where railways minister Nurul Islam Sujon and Indonesian ambassador in Dhaka Rina P Soemarno, among others, attended.
Rina P Soemarno said the three-day long trade fair was organised not only to attract business in Indonesia but also to attract Indonesian investments in Bangladesh.
She said the bilateral trade between Indonesia and Bangladesh reached to $1.97 billion in 2018 with a 48 per cent growth compared with that of in the year 2014.
Mentioning about the ample business opportunities of bilateral trade between the two countries of 420 million population, she said, ‘The governments of both the countries has imitated a move to sign preferential trade agreement considering the trade potentials.’
She said that expected that the PTA is expected to be signed by the middle of next year.
Seeking Indonesia’s support for the country’s railways communication development, Nurul Islam Sujon said that the Indonesian investors could explore the tourism potentials in Bangladesh.
Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority executive chairman Paban Chowdhury said that bilateral trade between Bangladesh-Indonesia would increase by four-five folds in next ten years sported by increased import of coal and oil from Indonesia.
Mentioning government’s plan to setup 100 economic zones in 15 years, he said that the country has been offering the best services, and competitive offers and incentives for the foreign investors in the regional and global context.
He also mentioned that the country’s economy has grown 7.8 per cent last year and will continue to grow above 8 per cent rate for next 10-15 years.
Indonesia-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Mohammed Riyadh Ali requested the BEZA executive chairman to allow an exclusive economic zone for the Indonesian investors as many of the investors of the country has expressed interest to come in Bangladesh with investments.
Indonesian Investment Coordinating Board additional secretary Meyer Siburian said that the government has planned to attract foreign investments in several areas including infrastructure, sea port and telecommunication infrastructure, fisheries, shipbuilding, shipyard and tourism.
Although the investments aboard from Bangladesh is not allowable, he called on the Bangladeshi investors to take the opportunity of making investments in tourism sector as the government has planned to develop ten more areas like Bali beach.
IBCCI director M Iftekhar Jonaed moderated the discussion where Indonesian foreign affairs (South and Central Asia) director general Ferdy Piay and GMF AeroAsia SVP Arif Faisal also spoke.

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