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Bangladesh, Turkey poised to be gateways of trade between Europe, South and Southeast Asia

Bangladesh and Turkey, two nations boasting immense trade potential, stand on the cusp of becoming the nexus for commerce between Europe and South and Southeast Asia.

The sentiment was echoed by FBCCI President Mahbubul Alam during a gathering with the visiting delegation from the Foreign Economic Relations Board of Turkiye (DEIK) and the Turkiye-Bangladesh Business Council on Monday in Dhaka’s FBCCI Icon Tower, UNB reports.

Alam emphasised the geographical advantage of both nations, with Turkey serving as a literal bridge between Europe and Asia and Bangladesh positioned strategically as the gateway to regions such as ASEAN and SAARC. He underscored the deep-rooted historical and cultural ties between the two countries, which have now flourished into a robust trade and investment partnership.

In the fiscal year 2022-23, Bangladesh witnessed exports to Turkey reaching US$ 495.81 million and imports from Turkey totaling US$ 380.3 million.

Alam noted the presence of 15-20 large Turkish companies actively operating in Bangladesh across various sectors, including garments and textiles, chemicals, engineering, construction, and energy.

These companies, along with over 100 Turkish representatives, have significantly contributed to job creation, skill transfer, and trade diversification in Bangladesh.

Alam commended the efforts of the Bangladeshi government in fostering economic growth, citing initiatives such as the implementation of SDG goals 2030, the national vision 2041, and the Delta Plan 2100.

He highlighted the favourable investment climate, including tax exemptions and access to working capital, as conducive factors for foreign investors.

Looking ahead, Alam expressed optimism about future cooperation, particularly in sectors such as pharmaceuticals, tourism, jute, and technology, where Turkish investments could thrive. He urged for enhanced trade promotion activities and proposed collaboration in developing high-tech products and tourism infrastructure.

The delegation, led by Chairperson Hidayet Onur Ozden of the Turkiye-Bangladesh Business Council, echoed Alam’s sentiments, emphasising the burgeoning trade ties between the two nations. Ambassador of Turkey to Bangladesh, Ramis Sen commended Bangladesh’s recent infrastructural developments and invited Bangladeshi business leaders to explore opportunities in Turkey.

FBCCI Senior Vice President Md. Amin Helaly highlighted Bangladesh’s potential as the 9th largest consumer market by 2030, offering significant investment opportunities for Turkish businesses. He assured FBCCI’s support in facilitating collaboration between the two countries.

The meeting, attended by FBCCI Vice President Dr. Joshoda Jibon Deb Nath, FBCCI Directors, Secretary General Md. Alamgir, and distinguished members of the DEIK and Turkiye-Bangladesh Business Council delegations, marked a pivotal moment in strengthening bilateral trade relations.