Mr Muthukumaran Vembu on BLLISS 2019 panel for ‘Regional Trade and Investment Opportunities’

November 07, 2019

The 3rd edition of BLLISS 2019 (Bangladesh Leatherfootwear & Leathergoods International Sourcing Show) was held from 31st October – 2nd November, 2019 at International Convention City, Bashundhara in Dhaka, Bangladesh. The BLLISS 2019 Show was inaugurated by HE Sheikh Hasina, MP, Prime Minister, People’s Republic of Bangladesh at a special event held on Wednesday, 30 October, 2019 at Bangabandhu International Conference Center in Dhaka, Bangladesh.

The 1st Breakout Session on ‘Regional Trade and Investment Opportunities’ highlighted the tremendous benefits that Bangladesh can offer with its massive infrastructure development, sub regional connectivity and liberal trade regimes. Bangladesh is poised to become a lucrative sourcing hub due to its strategic location between India & China.

Mr. V. Muthukumaran, President, Indian Shoe Federation & Global Business Head, Leather Products, Tata International Limited, was a panellist for the session along with Md. Saiful Islam, President of Leather goods And Footwear Manufacturers & Exporters Association of Bangladesh (LFMEAB) and Managing Director, Picard Bangladesh; Mr Ziaur Rahman; Managing Director, Bay Footwear Limited & Director, Executive Body to the Leather goods And Footwear Manufacturers & Exporters Association of Bangladesh (LFMEAB); and Mr William Wong, President, Federation of Hong Kong Brands.

USA President Mr. Trump’s ‘America-first’ trade policy caused a relocation of various manufacturing and trade hot spots within Asia. In such a relocating manufacturing condition, searching for new competitive countries has led to a disruption in long-established supply chains and seems to have accelerated the process of relocation of companies from China to the other Asian countries such as Bangladesh, India and Pakistan etc. In view of the above, the session will shed light on Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar (BCIM) economic corridor for broader South Asian trading integration and how to expedite inter-regional exports under the South Asia Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA). Within this evolving context, the session will explore readiness of Bangladesh as a future proof sourcing destination in global leather products and footwear export supply chain that appears to be realizable under the Bangladesh government’s initiative of attracting investment and diversification of export goods beyond the apparel sector. Further, the session will discuss how Bangladesh could develop a new viable strategy to entice more customers from non-traditional markets to order and continue sourcing from Bangladesh.

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