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INDEE Bangladesh 2020: Weaving a strong bond

Jan 01, 2020

Today, Bangladesh is the world’s second largest readymade garment exporting country, generating approximately $ 30 billion in export value every year. Thanks to Indian textile machineries it can scale new heights. To explore full potential between the two countries, EEPC India is organising the second edition of the Indian Engineering Exhibition in Bangladesh (INDEE Bangladesh 2020) from January 22-24.

With over 30 million middle- and affluent-class people, many consider Bangladesh a ‘development miracle’. Since 2009, Bangladesh’s economy has grown by 188 per cent in size with per capita income surpassing $ 1,909. The size of the Bangladesh economy is $ 690.3 billion as in 2017 in terms of purchasing power party (PPP). The country remained one of the fastest growing economies in the world registering a real GDP growth of 7.4 per cent in 2017. The growth was primarily attributed to revived exports and sustained domestic consumption.

Soaring India-Bangladesh relation

India, as a strategic partner and major source of FDI, has been financing many of the development projects in power, railways, road and transport, health and technical education, textiles, banking and telecommunications in Bangladesh. According to Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) data, Bangladesh’s exports to India stood at $ 1.25 billion in 2018-19, up by 42.91 per cent, which was $ 873.27 million in the previous fiscal. Indian entrepreneurs are investing in areas like education, light engineering, electronics, automotives, artificial intelligence, etc.

“India and Bangladesh share close cultural, economic and multidimensional relations. Over the years, the countries have set up close bilateral cooperation backed with the highest level political exchanges to promote trade and commerce. Over the last 5 years, India-Bangladesh bilateral trade has increased consistently from $ 4.3 billion in 2011-12 to $ 9.2 billion in 2017-18. During the same time India’s engineering trade with Bangladesh grew to $ 2.7 billion from $ 0.80 billion with the trade balance in favour of India. Automobile, electrical machinery and iron steel remained top three engineering items of export from India to Bangladesh in 2017-18,” said EEPC India – the country’s premier trade and investment promotion organisation.

Major Indian exports to Bangladesh include cotton, sugar, fruits, onions, cereals, vehicles, engineering goods, chemical and pharmaceuticals and accessories while primary Indian imports from Bangladesh include textile fibres, paper yarn, fish, readymade apparel, mineral fuels, salt and cement. Given its competence and geographical proximity to Bangladesh, India is in an ideal position to meet the demand for engineering and engineering products in Bangladesh. India’s engineering exports to Bangladesh are dominated by two and three wheelers, auto components, commercial vehicles, iron and steel, industrial machinery, aluminium products, etc which serve as critical inputs for the local economy.

Indian machinery propelling Bangladesh’s textile exports

Of the total amount ($1.25 billion) of Bangladesh’s exports to India in 2018-19, apparel sector earned $499.09 million, which is 79.09 per cent higher compared to $278.67 million in the previous year while knitwear products accounted for $369.43 million and woven items $129.66 million. In fact, the readymade garments industry in Bangladesh is the largest manufacturing sector and the most important GDP contributor in the country. Today, Bangladesh is the world’s second largest readymade garment exporting country, generating approximately $ 30 billion in export value every year. Moving forward, Bangladesh has set up an ambitious goal of achieving $50 billion in garment exports in 2021.

Assisting growth of Bangladesh’s readymade-garments industry is the Indian textile machinery industry. Bangladesh is one of the leading markets for Indian textile machinery exporters. Exports to Bangladesh totaled to $ 102.71 million in 2017-18, growth of 17.53 per cent and share of 14 per cent from the total textile machinery exports from India. Spinning, twisting and yarn preparation machines were the most exported commodity to Bangladesh in 2017-18 with export value of $ 52.82 million. Printing machinery, including digital printing machines, exports to Bangladesh has seen fabulous improvement with growth of 41.38 per cent totaling to $ 13.93 million in 2017-18.

The mega event

The World Bank estimates Bangladesh-India bilateral trade potential to be $ 16.4 billion. However, the actual trade figure for the 2019 fiscal year was $ 9.85 billion; thus showcasing immense potential that is yet to be explored by the two countries. Against this background, EEPC India - with support from the Indian Ministry of Commerce & Industry, and the High Commission of India in Dhaka - is organising the second edition of the Indian Engineering Exhibition in Bangladesh (INDEE Bangladesh 2020) at the International Convention City Bashundhara (ICCB), Dhaka from January 22-24.

INDEE Bangladesh 2020 will see the participation of over 120 Indian exhibitors including major PSUs and SMEs. There will be special attraction for startups and new exporters. INDEE (Indian Engineering Exhibitions) is one of the largest engineering expos in the world and has shown in 26 countries. INDEE Bangladesh is the 41st edition of INDEE. After the first edition in 2017, the exports from India to Bangladesh surged from $ 6.8 billion in 2016-17 to $ 8.6 billion in 2017-18 marking a growth of 26.31 per cent. Indian Engineering exports to Bangladesh have shown y-o-y growth of 16.7 per cent. Engineering constitutes 30 per cent of share in India’s total exports to Bangladesh. The expo will give special focus on promotion of MSMEs & SMEs participation through incentives.

Major Indian Government ministries and departments, and public sector undertakings (PSUs) in the engineering, steel, railway and power sectors are expected to participate. Organising business to business meetings and seminars with special focus for vendor & trader appointment, INDEE will reinforce India’s commitment to the increase and develop trade and economic relations with Bangladesh.

Focused sectors

Because of the overwhelming response to the INDEE engineering exhibition in Dhaka.

EEPC India will host the first edition of Mfg-Konnect focusing on wires & cables; tubes, pipes & welding; dies & moulds; and foundry & castings. The wire and cable industry in Bangladesh is growing at 15-20% annually. The demand for electricity is growing and there is a huge scope for expansion for the wire and cable industry. At present, cables made in Bangladesh are used without international accreditation, leading to cable related safety issues. Indian companies with certification have a big opportunity in this market. Bangladesh has steel pipe and tube manufacturing units but their capacity utilization is very low. Due to rapid infrastructure development, there is a huge demand for pipes and tubes in Bangladesh. The manufacturing sector in Bangladesh is growing at a rapid pace offering big opportunities for the Indian tubes and pipes sector. Dies and moulds are an import driven sector in Bangladesh. Dies and moulds require huge investments in plastic and metal-based industries. There are a few mould-making plants in Bangladesh. There is ample opportunity for Indian mould and die-making companies to grow in Bangladesh. Bangladesh is a major importer of foundry and castings. There is a strong need to upgrade and modernise factory furnaces to save production costs and make it environment-friendly. The foundry industry needs a training institute for training owners and workers. There is a good opportunity for Indian industry for JVs and partnerships with Bangladesh companies.

Last year, HSBC predicted that Bangladesh would be the 26th largest economy in the world, by 2030. Rapid urbanisation, fed by increasing consumption of electricity and more than 30 million middle class citizens is indeed a huge market for Indian exporters.