BGMEA, Cotton USA to collaborate on increasing mutual trade

A delegation from Cotton USA met with BGMEA President Faruque Hassan to discuss potential collaboration on creating trade opportunities that would be beneficial for both sides.

The team included William R. Bettendorf, Director, Supply Chain Marketing and South Asia; Stephanie Thiers-Ratcliffe, Director, European Brands and Retailers; and Ali Arsalan, Bangladesh Consultant, Cotton USA. 

BGMEA Director Tanvir Ahmed was also present at the meeting held at BGME Complex on May 30. 

Their discussion focused on how both organizations could work together to pave the way for more trade between Bangladesh and the USA, particularly in the apparel and cotton sectors.

BGMEA President Faruque Hassan said the lifting of the rule of mandatory fumigation of US cotton by Bangladesh has created a huge opportunity for both the USA and Bangladesh to enhance mutual trade. 

“Now US cotton can be imported by Bangladeshi importers without fumigation. It will reduce time, hassles and cost of doing business of the importer in importing cotton from the USA,” he said.

He said if the U.S. government allows duty-free access of the garments made of the cotton imported from the US, it would allow the US importers to purchase more clothing from Bangladesh. He sought cooperation of the Cotton USA in this matter. 

It would benefit both Bangladeshi RMG exporters and US cotton growers, thus will create a win-win situation, he added.  

Faruque Hassan informed the Cotton USA team about the BGMEA’s initiative to organize the Bangladesh Apparel Summit in the USA in October 2023 and requested them to extend support in organizing the event by inviting US cotton exporters and apparel buyers to the summit. 

Bangladesh is the second largest cotton-importing country in the world as 98% of the cotton requited for its export-oriented RMG industry is met by imports. 

The United States is the leading cotton exporter in the world.

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