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Japan—next $1b export market for Bangladesh

Japan is on the way to becoming the billion-dollar export market for Bangladesh in the current financial year of 2015-16. Bangladesh’s export earnings from Japan in the July-April period of FY16 grew by 18.30 per cent to $907.88 million from $767.43 million in the same period of FY15, according to the statistics of Export Promotion Bureau. With $90.78 million average monthly export, the total export in Japan will easily cross $1-billion mark in the remaining two months, May and June, in the current fiscal year, said exporters and experts. The East Asian country will be the eighth market for Bangladesh, where its export would touch the $1-billion mark. The export earnings from Japan in the FY15 totalled $915.21 million, which was 6.16 per cent higher than the earnings of $862.07 million in the FY14.Experts and exporters said Japan is an emerging market for Bangladesh and the export earnings from the market have been increasing rapidly due to supply of quality and high value-added readymade garment products. Earnings from RMG export to Japan in the first 10 months of the FY16 increased by 19.35 per cent to $651.68 million from $546 million in the same period of the FY15.‘Export earnings from Japan would exceed billion dollars in the current financial year due to the better performance by readymade garment,’ Nazneen Ahmed, senior research fellow of Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies, told New Age on Wednesday. She said the country’s RMG sector started export to the market in 2008 and later on Japanese businesses started to invest in Bangladesh and many buyers set up their offices in Dhaka to control quality of the RMG products to be exported to Japan. ‘Now Bangladesh is meeting quality as per the requirements of Japanese buyers and at the same time good number of manufacturers have been shipping high-end products,’ Naznin said. According to Shahidullah Azim, a former vice-president of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association, Japan is a promising market for Bangladesh as the country shifts orders from China to Bangladesh. ‘At the first stage of the export to the market, we were in tension to maintain quality of products as per the demand of Japanese buyers as the consumers in Japan are very choosy. But now manufacturers have got used to the quality Japanese buyers want,’ he said. BGMEA vice-president Mahmud Hassan Khan said that earnings from Japan would increase more because of their shifting of orders from China. He said that the Japanese buyers were now confident that Bangladesh was able to supply quality products and most of the buyers set up their offices in Dhaka. They do not conduct audit in factories but they have own inspection houses where Japanese buyers scrutinise the quality of products.