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South Asian Update
South Asian Update

Economy

Bangladesh-Japan begin formal talks to sign trade deal

 Published: 15:46, 28 May 2024

Bangladesh-Japan begin formal talks to sign trade deal

Bangladesh and Japan have initiated formal negotiations to establish a trade deal that will enable Bangladeshi manufacturers to continue benefiting from duty-free exports in the post-LDC (Least Developed Country) era and attract investments from Japan.

The first round of talks for an Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) took place in Dhaka from May 19 to May 23. The details of these discussions have not been disclosed.
During this round, "both sides exchanged their views on the method of negotiations and a broad range of negotiating areas," according to a press release.
A senior Bangladeshi government official involved in the negotiations, who requested anonymity, stated, "We primarily shared information on the 17 sectors identified in the joint study."
The joint study group identified several key sectors, including trade in goods, trade remedies, rules of origin, customs procedures, trade facilitation, and sanitary and phytosanitary measures.
Other sectors under discussion are technical barriers to trade, trade in services, investment, electronic commerce, government procurement, intellectual property, competition, business environment improvement, labor, environment, transparency, cooperation, and dispute settlement.
Japan ranks as Bangladesh's 12th largest trading partner in terms of exports and seventh largest for imports. Bangladesh's exports to Japan surpassed the $1-billion mark nearly a decade ago, largely due to duty-free benefits.

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