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‘Opportunities in Global Market’

By Mrs. Nasreen Awal Mintoo, International Symposium, December,


2010, Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh.

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Now a days the rise of technology has allowed our environment to be


characterized as a global one. Prior to Globalization, only the developed
countries dominated the global economy. In recent years, however, the
trend is shifting as the economies of many newly industrialized countries
continue to pick up stream. Intense price competition forced developed
countries to shift their production finding low cost in countries like
China, Malaysia, India, Bangladesh, and other Asian countries. The
global economy gave modern business the ability to market products and
services all over the globe.

Countries in South Asia have immense opportunity to be engaged in


global market with the help of modern production techniques, highly
advanced transportation systems, business friendly regulation and
obviously low cost of production.
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There are numerous advantages in shifting to a global economy. A major
advantage is the possibility to increase profit from economies of scale.
The number of people and the amount of their purchasing power are
higher for the world as a whole than for a single country, so companies
may increase sales volume by taking the opportunities in global market.

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Firms can source raw materials, products, services, and machineries
produced in foreign countries. They also can look for foreign capital and
technologies. It will boost profit margin and save cost.
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China, India and Bangladesh among them have vast and increasingly
prosperous populations, which are projected to grow to more than
three billion by 2030. China and India are among the fastest growing
nation. Being the neighbor of this two countries Bangladesh is well
situated in every sense to take advantage of this opportunity.
Bangladesh offers an unparallel investment climate compared to the
other South Asian economies. The geographic location of the country
is ideal for global trade, with very convenient access to international
sea and air routes.

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With improving education, technology and economic growth,
Bangladesh’s own market of 150 million people is becoming
increasingly attractive to business and foreign investors. There is a
growing middle class with significant purchasing power.

The country enjoys broad popular support for market economy reforms
and offers the most investment-friendly regulatory regime in South Asia.
Bangladesh owns a trainable, enthusiastic, and low-cost work force
suitable for any labor-intensive industry. Low energy price, tariff free
access to some of the developed country and liberal FDI policy turned
Bangladesh into one of the most lucrative business destination in the
world.

Bangladesh has some world class economic zone. According to the


FDI Magazine of The Financial Times in March 2010, Chittagong
Export Processing Zone ranks 3rd in the “Best Cost Effectiveness”
and also 4rth in the “Best Economic Potential” for 2010-2011.
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Potential high value investment opportunities in Bangladesh are
Software and ICT products, Food-products and agro-processing
products, Leather products, high priced designers readymade garments,
ship building, Hotel and Tourism Industries etc.

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In addition, investment opportunity in the infrastructure development
sector is enormous in Bangladesh. Government is highly interested in
developing Roads and high ways, energy and power, deep sea port and
air port etc. on a public private partnership basis.

Bangladesh is an important trading partner for India. Total bilateral trade


in 2008-2009 was more than US $ 3 billion. It is a big opportunity for
the Indian entrepreneurs to get engaged in importing/exporting, foreign
direct investment including wholly owned subsidiaries, joint ventures,
licensing, franchising and contracts. Some of the Indian origin large
multinational corporations are operating in Bangladesh. We would like
to welcome small and medium businesses too. You can come visit
Bangladesh and asses the opportunity by yourself. I am personally
inviting you to come and visit Multimode group.

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Most of the Women entrepreneurs in our region are involved in marginal


businesses which are mostly home grown and their activities are still
limited to small enterprises operating in local market only. Apart from
the family and social barriers against the mobility of women, the
operational barriers continue to critically limit their progress. It is
heartening to note that despite many barriers, a new women's
entrepreneur class has arisen in this region, taking on the challenge to
work in a male-dominated and competitive business environment. It will
be great to see them in global business.

It is our good fortune that both the prime minister and the opposition
leader in Bangladesh are women. We also have few important women
minister in the cabinet. Gender discrimination issue has been taken
seriously. Empowerment of women has been a big agenda in the
national development policies of Bangladesh. No doubt that condition
will change rapidly.

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Women Entrepreneurs Association of Bangladesh (WEAB) is the first
such organization, established in the year 2000, with the ideals of
improving and encouraging the women entrepreneurs of Bangladesh.
The main object of WEAB was to develop a support system for women
entrepreneurs. WEAB is persistently trying to build Knowledge and
Awareness, Capacity and Skills, Networks, Business Partnerships and
Trade Linkages among Women Entrepreneurs.
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It is our vision that women in Bangladesh will thrive not only in local
market but also in global market too.

Nasreen Awal