Bangladesh RMG

RMG workers in a Bangladesh factory. BBN file photo.

Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN) – Bangladesh’s export earnings grew by 7.23 per cent in the first quarter of the ongoing fiscal year (FY) 2017-18 compared to same period of the previous fiscal.

The overall export earnings rose to US$8.66 billion in the July-September period of the FY 18 from $8.08 billion in the same period of the FY 17, the state-run Export Promotion Bureau (EPB)’s latest data showed.

The receipt from apparel exports was also 2.84 per cent below the target of $8.92 billion, the official data showed.

However, the single month earnings in September 2017 dropped by 9.83 per cent to $2.03 billion compared to $2.25 billion in the same period last year.

The earnings were 26.72 per cent less than the target of $2.77 billion set for the month.

Experts and exporters said cited holidays during the Eid-ul-Azha as a reason for the fall in the earnings in the month of September last.

However, export earnings witnessed a strong growth in first two months of this FY were nearly 14 per cent to $ to $6.62 billion from $5.82 billion in the same period of the previous fiscal.

Some policy interventions from the government, like – extending bonded warehouse facility to all export-oriented sectors, are important to increase the export earnings and to ensure diversification of products they added.

They also said Bangladeshi manufacturers are losing their competitive advantage in non-traditional markets due to higher rates of tax on imported goods, on the one hand, and their production costs went up due to remediation costs and hike in prices of gas and electricity, on the other.

Earnings from readymade garment covering both knitwear and woven increased by 7.17 per cent to $7.14 billion during the period under review from $6.66 billion in the same period of the FY 17.

Bangladesh earned $3.73 billion from knitwear export during the period, which marked an increase of 10.18 per cent compared to that of $3.40 billion in the same period a year ago.

The earning from woven garments in the first two months of FY 18 grew by 4.04 per cent to $3.40 billion, from $2.26 billion in the same period of the last fiscal.

Exports of leather and leather products in the first quarter of this fiscal grew by 1.74 per cent to $324.62 million, compared to that of $319.06 million in the same period of FY 17.

The EPB data showed that earnings from jute and jute goods in Q1 of current fiscal stood at $204.51 million, recording 15.46 per cent growth.

Frozen food and live fish exports during the period grew by 23.08 per cent to $168.27 million, according to the data.