Stop FDI, says Bangladesh’s garments industryMay 6th, 2011 - 1:11 pm ICT by IANS
Dhaka, May 6 (IANS) Bangladesh’s readymade garments industry, the country’s highest foreign exchange earner, has demanded that the government stop all foreign direct investment (FDI) as it is “unable to compete” with foreign manufacturers.
Bangladesh Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA), the industry’s apex trade body, also pitched for tax concessions.
“Please, we don’t want further FDI in the garment sector. The local manufacturers are not capable to compete with foreign manufacturers. Because, unlike the local manufacturers, the foreigners receive special benefits like tax holiday and all the utility services, including power, gas, and water, in the export processing zones,” BGMEA president Shafiul Islam Mohiuddin told a pre-budget meeting with the National Board of Revenue (NBR).
BGMEA leaders submitted a set of proposals to NBR chairman Nasiruddin Ahmed for incorporation in the next national budget, New Age newspaper reported.
Local garments manufacturing units are contributing 92 percent of the apparel products that the country exports, the BGMEA president said.
The profit margin from garment export has also reduced by 30-35 percent despite a 42 percent growth in export over the first eight months of the current fiscal year as the banks are charging 15-17 percent interest on industrial loans, he added.
The body demanded tax holiday and other facilities to reduce the huge disparity between the foreign and local entrepreneurs.
Developed in the last three decades, the readymade garments industry has attracted foreign investment from South Korea, Taiwan and Japan, among others, who have set up units with sophisticated machinery.
Along with the knitwear industry, the readymade garments earned $12 billion last year.
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Tags: bgmea, current fiscal year, exchange earner, export processing zones, exporters association, foreign direct investment, garment export, garment sector, garments manufacturers, industrial loans, knitwear industry, last three decades, local entrepreneurs, mohiuddin, national budget, profit margin, readymade garments, sophisticated machinery, tax concessions, tax holiday