Co-sponsored by the American Chamber of Commerce in Bangladesh (AmCham) and the U.S. Embassy…
– Dhaka, the show began in the capital from March 14 to 16 at the Pan Pacific Sonargaon hotel…featuring the best U.S. businesses and products in Bangladesh and highlighted the strong trade partnership between the U.S. and Bangladesh. Over the span of a quarter century, this 3-daylong exhibition has emerged as Bangladesh’s pristine annual business event which drawing thousands of visitors each edition . 46 exhibitors (occupying 74 booths) exhibited more than 150 US companies and participated in the show that remained open for visitors all three days (March 14, 15 & 16) from 10:00am to 8:00pm.
The press-conference, an integral part of the Trade Show took place on 12th March 2019 at the Meghna Room of Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel attended by the AmCham President, Mr. Md. Nurul Islam, US ambassador to Bangladesh H.E Earl R. Miller, Former President, AmCham Mr. Aftab Ul Islam and few more from AmCham and US embassy, Dhaka. Speaking about the trade show AmCham president Mr. Md. Nurul Islam said that annual US trade Show is one of the major activities that AmCham Bangladesh undertakes with a view to stimulating greater understanding about each other’s economic potentials and opportunities. Ambassador Miller, The US envoy in Dhaka briefing the media said that US exports to Bangladesh rose 43 percent last year from the previous year. “It’s an amazing increase.” “There is still great deal of potentials to sell US goods and services. We are already large suppliers of power turbine, soyabeans and other heavy machinery”. “They are bringing some of the best and the most innovative techniques to Bangladesh,” Miller continued. The US Ambassador also said he wanted to see American CEOs and trade missions visit Bangladesh apart from their traditional destinations Beijing and New Delhi in this region. This is, he said, not just for the 165 million population market, but also for the “entrepreneurial energy” in Bangladesh. He also praised Bangladesh’s economic development and said “economic development has to go hand in hand with democratic development”. Former AmCham president Aftab ul Islam, current AmCham Vice President Showkat Ali Sarkar, and Economic Affairs Officer of the US embassy James Town also spoke at the press briefing.
As an important tradition of the Tarde Show, the US Ambassador H.E Earl R. Miller hosted a reception in honor of the participants on 13th March evening at his residence. All the exhibitors from home and abroad along with the members of AmCham, representatives from the Government and business leaders of the country joined the program. While addressing the reception gathering Ambassador Miller welcomed all the participants and invited guests for their interest in the 3-day long Trade Show which was going to take place from the following morning. He echoed the same as he did in the press briefing that Bangladesh offers enormous opportunities for investors and playing a greater role on the regional and global stage and there is much more interest what is happening here and and the opportunity it offers. He expressed his satisfaction being the co-host of the US Trade Show. He thanked all the sponsors, specially Chevron for their continued cooperation and active participation at the Show and related events. Hon’ble State Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr. Md. Shahriar Alam, MP, also welcomed the participants with a brief remark. He said that US is still the single largest export destination for Bangladesh and the source for highest FDI in the country and wished that the Show would become rewarding for the participants and visitors as always.
The 3-day US Trade Show was inaugurated on the morning of March 14th, 2019 by the Honorable Commerce Minister of Bangladesh Mr. Tipu Munshi, M.P. The ceremony included AmCham President Mr. Md. Nurul Islam, US ambassador Earl R. Miller, AmCham Vice President Mr. Showkat Ali Sarkar, Advisor to the AmCham President, Khd. Rashed Maqsood were among others, present at the opening ceremony of the trade show. AmCham President Mr. Md. Nurul Islam in his opening remarks said over the last 26 Years with the US Trade Show, Bangladesh has experienced steady economic growth and progress, leading to an expansion of US-Bangladesh bilateral trade from $1 billion to more than $8 billion in 2018, an eight-fold increase and a number we were working hard to increase in the future. US ambassador to Bangladesh Earl. R. Miller said that US business in Bangladesh was increasing day by day that reflects the strong ties between the two countries. He said, “The 26th annual US Trade Show comes at an auspicious time for US-Bangladesh trade and investment ties,” adding that US exports to Bangladesh had a “banner year” in 2018. Exports to Bangladesh reached $2.1 billion, a 43% increase from 2017. He also said, US Trade Show is an “excellent opportunity” to recognize the contribution of US companies to Bangladesh’s development. Addressing the event as its chief guest, Bangladesh Commerce Minister Mr. Tipu Munshi urged entrepreneurs in the United States to come forward to invest in the developing 100 economic Zones in Bangladesh. Calling the United States, a large trade partner, he requested the US Ambassador to Bangladesh Earl R Miller to take steps to reinstate the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) status for Bangladesh as the country has made significant progress in workplace safety.
A Welcome Dinner was also organized on March 14th evening to greet the overseas guests of the Trade Show Participating Companies and the Participants, where present chair of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Ministry of Commerce and former commerce minister, Mr. Tofail Ahmed M.P graced the occasion as Chief Guest. US embassy Deputy Chief of Mission Mr. Joel Reifman was present as a special Guest in the program. Addressing the audience in the welcome remarks, AmCham President Mr. Md. Nurul Islam termed the Trade Show the biggest event on AmCham’s calendar every year in pursuance of its core objective and appreciated the contribution of the chief guest in establishing the AmCham in Bangladesh. He also mentioned that AmCham had earned another distinction last year by becoming the first country-specific foreign Chamber to acquire office premise of its own. He specially thanked “Bangla CAT” for sponsoring this dinner and their continuous support of the US trade Show. Mr. Joel Reifman in his brief remarks also appreciated the the show how it worked as a catalyst in promoting the bi-lateral trade between the two economies and mentioned few aspects to look into to improve the existing business environment and finally thanked US embassy and AmCham for making the show a great success. Mr. Tofail Ahmed in his remarks thanked both the organizers for bringing the show for 26th times in the country. He recalled memories while assuming his office from very early days was associated with the conversion from ABEF to AmCham and expressed sincere gratitude towards the chamber and its members for their contribution towards developing the bilateral relation since its birth. He also said trade and business relations between Bangladesh and the United States were excellent and US is the largest single-country destination for Bangladesh’s exports and expected it to remain so. He hoped that Bangladesh would be able to attract more foreign direct investment in the coming days and AmCham would play a role in this regard.
Apart from the regular display of products and service of the participants, 2 different seminars were held in collaboration with the US embassy. It helped the visitors and business community as well as enthusiastic minds to understand the various aspects of business as well avenues of future growth with the USA.
●Education in USA: On day Two (Friday, 15th March 2019) the seminar was held in the Surma Room of the venue explaining various steps involved in acquiring higher studies in USA and how US embassy can be of assistance for the aspiring applicants from Bangladesh in the process.
●Business Visa: On day Three (Saturday, 16th March 2019) one more seminar was held in the same venue where embassy officials from the consular section explained the procedures and necessary requirements for different categories of visa applications which was well attended by a large number of AmCham members and visitors of the US Trade Show.
AmCham records its profound gratitude and appreciation to all sponsors including ●Bangla Trac Ltd. (BanglaCAT) ●Coca-Cola Bangladesh Limited ●Chevron Bangladesh ●GE International INC – Bangladesh, US Embassy, Dhaka and the Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel did an outstanding job and deserve warm appreciation for their excellent support for the 26th US Trade Show 2019.