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Investors hesitant about Bangladesh

Europeans want to invest in Bangladesh as they perceive the country to be a good option for ready-to-work labor force and a fast growing economy. Moreover workplace safety has improved after inspections by Accord and Alliance. However, investors face a lot of hurdles.

A foreign investor has to collect nearly 25 permissions from different agencies and departments for starting a business. Bangladesh is still languishing in the lower rungs of the World Bank’s ease of doing business. It comes in at 177 in the latest edition — only higher than Afghanistan in South Asia.

While foreign investors want a liberalised trade policy, the country still follows protectionism. There is no clear and long-term plan on power and energy. This is very important to investors for making an investment plan. Although garment shipments from Bangladesh to the EU are growing, Myanmar and Ethiopia are looking to become strong contenders for the country’s throne as the world’s second largest apparel supplier. They can be good places for garment sourcing in future as both countries have been giving incentives to attract foreign investment. Potential European investors are look for a platform in Bangladesh where they can discuss the challenges they face and seek remedy from the government such that their investment plans can go through.