The Dhaka International Trade Fair 2016 ended yesterday with a record 147 percent jump in export orders from the previous year.
Businesspeople bagged around Tk 235 crore ($30.15 million) from the 21st DITF, compared to around Tk 95 crore ($12.18 million) a year earlier, Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed said at the closing ceremony of the country's biggest international trade fair.
“Business is the main driving force of the economy, and the present government is ensuring a business-friendly environment.”
Referring to the $33.5 billion export target for this fiscal year, Ahmed said Bangladesh has already achieved $16 billion during the July-December period.
“We are expecting that our exports will exceed the target. There are many obstacles to achieving this, but none of them can stop us,” Ahmed said without elaboration.
Bangladesh's total exports will cross the $60-billion mark by the end of 2021, when the nation will celebrate its 50th year of independence, he said.
Addressing the function, Abdul Matlub Ahmad, president of the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry, said the country's apex trade body wants to be a co-organiser of the DITF from next year. “We are also urging the government to organise the DITF at all divisional headquarters at a time,” he said.
In response, the commerce minister said: “We will consider the FBCCI's proposal.”
Some 22 countries participated in the fair this year, which was organised by the Export Promotion Bureau.
The commerce ministry and the EPB allocated 553 stalls to local and foreign companies to showcase their products. Of the stalls, 56 were allocated to foreign countries.
A total of 38 institutions were awarded in 14 categories. Walton Hi-Tech Industries bagged the first price in the premier pavilion category.
Walton Hi-Tech Industries paid the highest value-added tax of Tk 17.17 lakh, followed by Hatil Complex and Rangs Electronics, which paid Tk 16.21 lakh and Tk 12.6 lakh in VAT respectively.
Some 27 other service providing agencies, including police, RAB, Dhaka Power Distribution Company, Dhaka North City Corporation and Novo Nordisk were also awarded crests for their services during the fair.
Large crowds of people flocked to the fair on the last day to buy products at huge discounts. Most companies had offered attractive discounts to clear their stocks.