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WTO praises BD's trade policy

Tipu Munshi tells press briefing

FE Report | April 11, 2019 00:00:00

Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi said on Wednesday that members of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) praised the country's trade policy that contributed to the nation's progress in different sectors over the last few years.

The appreciation came during the fifth trade policy review (TPR) meeting on Bangladesh in Geneva, Switzerland on April 3 and 5 last.

"They (WTO) members are satisfied with our progress in different sectors over the last few years," the minister told a press briefing at his ministry on the outcome of the TPR.

"We discussed different trade related issues with different member countries of WTO like the European Union (EU), the US and Japan. They praised the progress in our development works," he said.

"They also asked us to reduce the subsidy on agriculture," said Mr. Munshi, who led the Bangladesh delegation to the TPR meeting, adding that Bangladesh highlighted issues in this regard considering the national interest.

He said the WTO lauded Bangladesh's achievements in reducing the rate of poverty, increasing the per capita income and volume of export and import, maintaining the favourable investment environment and registering the high growth rate over the last one decade.

The briefing was told that Bangladesh had sent answers to 140 questions, raised by different countries, to the WTO headquarters before joining the TPR review meeting.

The meeting also discussed Bangladesh's investment situation, monetary policy, revenue policy, industrial policy, intellectual property rights, agriculture, fisheries, energy and services sectors from 2012 to 2018.

Inflation, infrastructure of power sector development, women empowerment, modernisation of the country's communication infrastructure and capacity building of all organisations those deal with the trade were also came up for discussion.

Mr. Munshi said he also informed WTO Director General Roberto Azevedo that Bangladesh has already modified its trade policy to get success in the global trade as well as to cope with the challenges to come in the way of the country's transformation from the least developed country status to becoming a developing country.

He informed the WTO member countries that Bangladesh wants preferential trade facilities and implementation of Doha round decisions of the WTO.

He also informed the press briefing that the country is holding negotiations with Brazil to expand bilateral trade.

"We have opportunities to increase our businesses with Brazil by exporting readymade garment and other things," he said.

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