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Dhaka Tribune

JS body chief: Is GSP so important?

Update : 22 Apr 2014, 09:22 PM

The parliamentary watchdog on commerce ministry yesterday observed that the government should not be so much bothered to regain the generalised system of preference (GSP) from the US government.

At its first meeting, the members of the Parliamentary Standing Committee came up with the observation that the volume of trade under the GSP was very “negligible.”

“We see much hue and cry about the GSP. Why do we need it? Is it so important? We earn only $5m annually exporting products under the GSP,” Prof Ali Ashraf, chairman of the committee, said after the meeting.

He asked the commerce ministry not to be so worried about the GSP. “Rather you should concentrate on trade governance,” said Prof Ashraf, a businessman by profession.

Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed briefed the MPs about the government’s move to regain the GSP. “It is a matter of prestige. We are trying to meet the conditions necessary for retaining the GSP,” Prof Ashraf quoted the minister as telling the standing committee.

Several lawmakers also supported the chairman.

Prof Ashraf said: “In the past the minister went to the market to enquire about the price of essential commodities. We should not do so as it does not work.”

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