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Bangladesh looks to enhance trade ties with Kenya

Bangladesh and Kenya are looking to enhance bilateral trade. They are working on removing barriers such as the existing 25 per cent duty, ensuring smooth supply of raw materials and enhancing technical support. In the last fiscal, Bangladesh earned $10.78 million from exports to Kenya and knitwear exports stood at $0.38 million.

Kenya is preparing itself as one of the representative countries for garments made in the East African region. Agricultural products are central to Kenya's export industry with horticulture and tea being the most important.

Bangladesh is the world’s second biggest apparel exporter after China. Garments including knit wear and hosiery account for 80 per cent of export revenue. Bangladesh has a population more than four times Kenya’s but a lower dependency ratio, as population growth has been slower. Labor force skills - measured by the average number of years of schooling of the working-age population - have increased in both countries.

International sea freight transport costs have, until the late 1990s, been markedly higher in Kenya than Bangladesh. Inland road haulage rates remain higher, because haulage is more cartelised in Kenya than in Bangladesh. Labor costs in manufacturing have been lower in Bangladesh than in Kenya.