FBCCI urges Filipino entrepreneurs to invest in Bangladesh17 April 2014
UNB, Dhaka :
The Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) on Wednesday urged the entrepreneurs of the Philippines to invest in Bangladesh taking the advantages of liberal and attractive investment opportunities.
FBCCI president Kazi Akram Uddin Ahmed made the request at a seminar on 'Doing Business with the Philippines' held in the city.
He also requested the Filipino entrepreneurs to participate in the trade fairs and exhibitions that usually take place in Bangladesh.
The apex trade body chief recommended flexible visa regime with the Philippines and exchange of frequent high-level trade delegations to strengthen trade relations in the coming days.
The seminar was jointly organised by the Embassy of the Philippines in Dhaka and the FBCCI.
Ambassador of the Philippines to Bangladesh Vicente Vivencio T Bandillo, FBCCI first vice President Monowara Hakim Ali, Chairman of Nitol-Niloy Group Abdul Matlub Ahmad, President of the Philippines-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry Eng Rashed Makshud Khan, FBCCI directors M Rezaul Karim Reznu, M Jalaluddin Ahmed (Yeamin) and businessmen of different sectors were also present.
Ambassador Vicente Vivencio said the Philippines government is keen to strengthen bilateral relations with Bangladesh.
He agreed with the FBCCI president to exchange business delegations, easing visa regime and cultural cooperation, and sought cooperation from Bangladesh government and private sector in promoting the common interests.
Monowara Hakim Ali said the tourism sectors of the two countries could be flourished as both the Philippines and Bangladesh have common cultural traditions, food habits and lifestyle similarities.
She requested the Philippines to invest in tourism, healthcare, IT, and craftsmanship sectors, and urged Philippines Embassy in Dhaka to promote and assist different business Chambers to accelerate private sectors development.
Matlub Ahmad said Bangladesh exported products worth about US$ 40 million to the Philippines last fiscal year against the target of around US$ 100 million.
John Paul B Inigo, Commercial Counselor of Embassy of the Philippines in New Delhi, made a power-point presentation on Philippines' various sectors.
According to the presentation, Bangladesh is the Philippines' 54th trading partner in 2012, 46th export market and 67th import supplier.
The Philippines' export to Bangladesh stands at about US$ 28.72 million while import from Bangladesh US$ 8.01 million annually. The balance of trade remains in favour of the Philippines amounting to US$ 20.71 million.
The FBCCI has a joint cooperation agreement between the Philippines Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) which was signed on December 15, 1989.
Besides, the FBCCI and the Philippines Chamber of Commerce and Industry signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on October 20-21, 2008 to establish a Bangladesh-Philippines Business Council in Dhaka and a Philippines-Bangladesh Business Council in Manila to boost bilateral trade and investments.
The FBCCI president emphasised reactivating the joint cooperation agreement since Bangladesh is eager to increase cooperation in trade and investment with the Philippines.