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Dhaka Tribune

Tofail urges WTO to help ease manpower export

Update : 21 May 2014, 07:44 PM

Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed has called upon the World Trade Organisation to take effective steps in easing visa procedure as well as improving connectivity to facilitate expansion of world trade.

“Complexities in issuing visa have created a roadblock to trade in services in the form of exporting human resources,” he told a conference titled “World Economic Forum on East Asia” of commerce ministers from different countries in Manila, Philippines yesterday.

The minister also called upon the WTO to remove all the barriers to facilitate free trade for the least developed countries like Bangladesh as agreed in the ninth WTO ministerial conference in Bali, Indonesia in December last year.

“We want implementation of the decision adopted in Bali.”

He said Bangladesh is gradually becoming economically stronger with its exports reaching to around US$30bn at present and accumulating around US$20bn of foreign exchange reserve, mainly aided by a robust remittance inflow of around $15bn annually.

“Bangladesh would do even better, subject to getting enhanced access to international trade,” he said.

Tofail said the country is making efforts to diversify its export items as well as export market in one hand, and trying to sign free trade agreements with different countries to boost exports.

He said Bangladesh is making progress in a planned manner to achieve a strong footing in its export trade and expected the WTO would take effective measures to implement the Bali Package to act as a catalyst in the country’s endeavour. 

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