Annual General Meeting of the FBCCI held
The private sector should prepare to face the new challenges of the LDC graduation: FBCCI
Bangladesh’s graduation from the Least Developed Country will bolster the image of the country in the international arena. As a result, new paths will be opened in trade and foreign investment will also increase. However, along with these possibilities, several challenges are also waiting for the country’s private sector. The private sector should prepare from now on to face the challenges.
Md. Jashim Uddin, president of the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) said this at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the FBCCI at a Convention Hall in the capital on December 28, 2022.
Due to Covid-19 Pandemic, the AGM of the session 2020-2021 could not be held on schedule. As a result, two separate AGMs of the session 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 were held on the same day.
FBCCI president said in the meeting, ‘Bangladesh will lose special trade privileges in several markets including Europe, one of the top export destinations of the country, as a result of the LDC graduation. The private sector has to face competition in maintaining the price and product quality. This is why emphasis should be given to research, innovation, and product diversification.’
To make the export trading market sustainable, the government should initiate more bilateral trade agreements including Free Trade Agreement (FTA), Preferential Trade Agreement (PTA), he opined. Md. Jashim Uddin emphasized on obtaining certificates from various institutions, reducing complexity in its renewal, effective automation, and increasing the capacity of port management to attract more foreign investment.
The FBCCI president said, ‘The Covid-19 pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine crisis have resulted in an abnormal increase in energy price, food price, agricultural production cost, industrial raw materials, parts, and transportation cost. High inflation is also occurring in currency exchange rates. Rising costs of doing business have made it difficult for local entrepreneurs to survive in the global competition.’ In such a situation, he suggested that the private sector should focus on increasing the use of technology in the industry, creating a skilled workforce, increasing efficiency in business management, and increasing the capacity to produce goods at competitive prices.
In the ongoing situation, the FBCCI President urged the District Chambers and Associations to be more proactive to maintain productivity. At the same time, he suggested identifying sector-wise problems and bringing them up at the policy-making level through FBCCI.
He also mentioned that a 3-day long program has been organized to celebrate the golden jubilee of the FBCCI, ‘We are going to hold a two-day international business summit to brand Bangladesh as an investment-friendly prosperous country. On the third day of the golden jubilee celebration, distinguished businessmen, freedom fighters, and entrepreneurs who have contributed to the national economy will be honored. Moreover, a three-day international fair titled ‘Best of Bangladesh’ will be organized to highlight Bangladeshi local products and services to the world, he opined. He also inaugurated the logo and website of ‘Bangladesh Business Summit 2023’ which is going to be held on March next year.
He said, ‘The private sector can play an important role in achieving the Vision-2041 and Delta Plan 2100 by contributing to the environment-friendly technology, modern production system, and green economy.’ For this, he emphasized on increasing investment in research and innovation.
Md. Jashim Uddin also said that the private sector is closely working with the government in many sector including achieving the SDGs, LDC graduation etc. Therefore, to build a developed country; business-friendly revenue management is needed along with giving more importance to the recommendations of FBCCI in the upcoming budget, he noted. He also urged the industrialists to reduce the imports of the country by increasing domestic production.
Meanwhile, President Md Jashim Uddin thanked the Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on behalf of the Board of Directors and the General Assembly member of the FBCCI for inaugurating the metro rail in the capital on Wednesday. The annual report, minutes, audit report of FBCCI were unanimously approved in the meeting.
The Annual Reports and Audit Reports on both the session of 2020-2021 and 2021-22 were unanimously approved at the meeting in the presence of the General Body members of the FBCCI.
FBCCI former president Abdul Matlub Ahmad, former first vice president Mohammad Ali, Monowara Hakim Ali, former vice president Abu Alam Chowdhury, Dewan Sultan Ahmed, Helal Uddin and others participated in the open discussion.
FBCCI Senior Vice President Mostofa Azad Chowdhury Babu, Vice President Md. Aminul Hoque Shamim, Md. Amin Helaly, Salahuddin Alamgir, Md. Habib Ullah Dawn, M. A Razzak Khan, and directors were present at the meeting.