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Improving BD-Canada's Economic Relation

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Md. Muzibur Rahman :
Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic to the Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocean, covering 9.98 million square kilometers (3.85 million square miles), making it the world's second-largest country by total area. A developed country, Canada has the sixteenth-highest nominal per-capita income globally as well as the twelfth-highest ranking in the Human Development Index. Its advanced economy is the tenth-largest in the world, relying chiefly upon its abundant natural resources and well-developed international trade networks.
Canada is part of several major international and intergovernmental institutions or groupings including the United Nations, NATO, the G7, the Group of Ten, the G20, the North American Free Trade Agreement and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum. Bangladesh and Canada established diplomatic relationship in 1972 and still now Canada is a good friendly country of Bangladesh. Bilateral relationships between the countries mainly focused on development cooperation, trade, investment and people to people links. Peoples to people's contacts between Bangladesh and Canada is increasing and expanding day by day. The Bangladesh-Canadian community is estimated over 100,000 and increasing in recent years. The citizens of Bangladesh go there either for permanent settlement, for trade and commerce or for educational purpose and they are contributing to Canadian prosperity and to the multi-cultural fabric of Canada.
A good number of students are studying in the Canadian universities and in other educational and vocational institutions. Bangladesh and Canada share a number of multilateral interests including trade liberalization through WTO (World Trade Organization) and support for international peacekeeping. The two countries also enjoy close ties as members of UNO (United Nation Organization) and the commonwealth. Bangladesh has a good commercial relationship with Canada and is increasing significantly in the recent years. The value of bilateral merchandise trade were $600.5 million in 2004 however it is now $2.4 billion in 2018. Canada's main exports to Bangladesh are cereals, pulses, iron and steel, fertilizer and chemicals. Canada's main imports from Bangladesh are woven apparel, knit apparel, miscellaneous textile articles, headgear and footwear. Potential trading opportunities for Bangladesh to explore readymade garments, porcelain,  leather and leather goods, ceramic, chemical and pharmaceuticals, wood and wooden goods, rod and cement, plastic goods, jute and jute goods, tableware and kitchenware, agro-processed goods, frozen fish and others. Bangladesh can also export to Canada of skilled manpower like doctors, nurses, engineers, teachers, agriculturists ICT experts etc. Canada's potential investors can invest in Bangladesh in the lucrative sectors like ICT (Information and Communication Technology), power sector, bridge and construction, deep sea-port, aviation and communication, tourism, blue economy, solar energy, agro-based industries and other mega projects. Canada has provided over $4 billion of international assistance to Bangladesh since 1972.
At present, Canada's programming supports of mutual priorities in the areas of gender equality; empower of women and girls, health, skill training and support to the readymade garments sectors are praiseworthy. These development priorities are in the line with Canada's Feminist International Policy. Canada has expressed its concern with the state of Rohingya refugee issues in Bangladesh which are caused by Myanmar inhuman activities. Canada is also concern about violation of human rights in Myanmar, the rights of women and girls, and wants its early solution. Our Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina visited Canada in the mid of last year and attended the G-7 outreach leaders meeting in Canada at the invitation of Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau. It was a fruitful and cordial visit to Canada of our Prime Minister. In the G-7 meeting, our Prime Minister described and explained the various sector of Bangladesh economy and sought help for Bangladesh for its post climate change and disaster effects.
Bangladesh is a disaster prone country like flood, drought, cyclone, environmental degradation & other natural calamities which are as usual every year. Canada can help us both financially and technologically to mitigate these problems sufficiently. She stressed and emphasized for invest in Bangladesh by foreign investor especially by Canada. Canada is a rich and technologically sound country in the world and may help Bangladesh in many ways for its rapid growing economy. Bangladesh is a role model in the South Asia and lucrative place for foreign investor. It is now a safe place for investment of both domestic and foreign investors. Bangladesh retains its economic growth from 6.5% to 7.5% in the last decade & is hoping to reach of its growth at minimum 10-12% in near future.
We want more Canadian help & investment in our mega projects & free access to all kind of our products in Canadian markets.

(Md. Muzibur Rahman, writes on development and economics issues, e-mail: muzibur64@gmail.com)

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