21pc rise in July-Oct exports
Author / Source : Mashiur Rahaman
DHAKA, NOV 13: The country’s overseas shipment of merchandise earned US$8.12 billion at the end of the first four months of the current fiscal year (FY), showing no sign of strain so far by the ongoing financial stress across the globe. Export Promotion Bureau data, released on Sunday, shows a 21 per cent growth in export earnings during July-October against the $6.72 billion earned during the same period a year ago. The Ministry of Commerce has set an ambitious year-end export target at $26.50 billion for FY 12. Exporters earned $22.93 billion last fiscal year.
The four-month export performance has been shown 30.64 per cent up over the target set for the period, according to the EPB data.
The country’s leading exporters and economists assumed that the financial crisis in Greece, political turmoil in Italy, high unemployment rate in Spain, Italy and the United Kingdom and economic meltdown and high unemployment rate in the United States (single largest destination) would hit the export growth. But the monthly data showed no sign of stress till the end of October, an EPB official explains.
The October earning was $1.76 billion, up by 7.38 per cent from the pre-determined monthly target and a 16 per cent growth against $1.7 billion earned in October 2010.
EPB said earnings from the major sectors such as knitwear, woven garments, frozen fish, jute and jute goods are still slowing healthy growth trend.
The knitwear sector fetched nearly $3.38 billion during July-October, registering a 16.88 per cent growth over the corresponding months in FY 11.
Export earnings from woven garments totalled $2.94 billion, marking a rise of 25.10 per cent against the corresponding period of the last fiscal year.
Both the garments category – knitwear and woven—secured a 31 per cent growth from the pre-determined target set for the period.
The RMG sector witnessed 40 per cent growth during July-June in FY 11.
Exports of primary commodities fetched nearly $406 million, frozen foods $253 million and agricultural products $153 million.
The export earning from merchandise is still positive but margin of profit at the investors end has been lowered to its minimum by the government’s latest fuel price hike up to 10 per cent, explained Abdus Salam Murshedy, president of Exporters Association of Bangladesh.
“Since the retail price of exportable items is fixed earlier through negotiation between the manufacturer and buyers after considering all existing production cost aspects, the sudden fuel price hike will hurt the industry badly,” Murshedy said.
He said apparel industry that covers almost 90 per cent of the country’s export, might sustain the burnt of global recession this time but abrupt change within the country will certainly make it vulnerable in the competitive international market.