Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN)- BGMEA and BKMEA have urged the political parties concerned to call off March 18-19 countrywide strike, generally known as hartal, in the greater interest of the economy.

In a joint statement on Saturday, Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) and Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BKMEA) said hartal will impede growth, discourage investment and slow down export putting employment at risk.

“BGMEA and BKMEA request the political parties to refrain from harmful programmes like hartal in the future apart from withdrawing the March 18-19 countrywide hartal,” it said. Expressing deep concern over the repeated strikes, Bangladesh Insurance Association (BIA) on the day urged the BNP-led 18-party alliance to withdraw its planned general strikes on March 18-19.

BBN/SSR/AD-17Mar13-12:49 pm (BST)