DHAKA Bangladesh aims to raise its annual bilateral trade with Canada to $5.0 billion by 2022 from the current $2.0 billion, a senior government official said on Saturday.
Bangladesh is the second-largest importer of Canadian food grains and other agricultural products in South Asia. Since January 2003, Canada has allowed duty-free access to Bangladeshi products, in particular ready-made garments. Clothing accounts for 96 percent of Bangladesh's exports to Canada.
"We are confident to increase our bilateral trade volume by more than double from the present level over the next five years," Shahriar Alam, junior minister for foreign affairs, told a conference.
Alam urged Canadian entrepreneurs to take advantage of the liberal investment-friendly atmosphere of Bangladesh.
"Their investment in the Special Economic Zones of Bangladesh in the areas of power, energy and transportation sectors, food and agro processing, IT and telecommunications, light engineering, shipbuilding, services and hospitality sectors will contribute to the economic development of both countries."
Canadian High Commissioner Benoît-Pierre Laramée said the Canadian government wanted to work with Bangladesh, especially on environmental and climate change issues and also gender equality and the health sector.
(Reporting By Serajul Quadir; Editing by Hugh Lawson)