Home Apparel Foreign RMG buyers cancelling B’desh visit

Foreign RMG buyers cancelling B’desh visit

A number of foreign buyers of Bangladesh garments, in addition to officials of Japanese giant Uniqlo, have cancelled their scheduled business meeting in Bangladesh and asked exporters to fly to a third country to negotiate orders following the Gulshan attack. Exporters said that till now buyers are yet to show any intention to shift or cut export orders from Bangladesh due to terrorist attack at Gulshan on July 1 that killed 17 foreigners including apparel buyers, but they expressed worry over the situation and wanted to know what measures have been taken to ensure security of foreign buyers. ‘Some buyers of Europe and the United States, who often visit Bangladesh, requested us to arrange visa to visit their countries for business meetings. They are not unwilling to place orders in our factories but feeling scared to fly to Bangladesh due to Gulshan attack,’ Abdus Salam Murshedy, president of the Exporters Association of Bangladesh, told New Age. He said that a number of global sourcing agents are not willing to fly to Bangladesh and exporters would have to fly to third countries like Hong Kong, Singapore and Dubai which would increase cost of doing business. Visa related difficulties would also hamper business, Salam added.Japanese clothing brand Uniqlo cancelled visit of its officials soon after the Gulshan attack. One of the BGMEA members said that one of his buyers has recently cancelled a scheduled business meeting in Bangladesh and now he has to fly to India for order negotiation. Mahmud Hassan Khan Babu, vice president of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association, said that following the Gulshan attack some foreign buyers changed venue of business meetings to third countries from Bangladesh.‘I think buyers have taken such decision for the time being but it would create some difficulties for the exporters. Due to the shifting of business meetings to other countries the cost of doing business would increase and some manufacturers would fail to arrange visa within a short time to attend the meetings,’ he said. The BGMEA leader said that following the Gulshan attack the International Cotton Council has cancelled a meeting in Bangladesh which was scheduled on July 14. Babu said that they held a meeting with the director general of Industrial Police on Tuesday at the BGMEA office over the situation and police assured to beef up security for the foreigners in the industrial sector. The BGMEA vice president said that the director general of Industrial Police Abdus Salam said that they would prepare a list of foreign buyers liaison officials in Bangladesh and foreigners who worked at garment and other sectors to ensure their security. Babu said that the list would be prepared within one week and then further meetings would be held with the Industrial Police to discuss about the security measures. Another BGMEA leader told New Age that they provided a list of the liaison office of foreign buyers and brands to the government and requested to beef up security in the area of Gulshan, Banani, Baridhara and Uttara where the offices are situated.