Exports of clothing to America are declining alarmingly. Bangladesh’s exports fell by 25 percent in the 11 months of 2023, according to the country’s commerce department. Entrepreneurs say that the US purchase orders have come less due to various reasons including global inflation, national elections in Bangladesh. However, they also said that the doubts during the election have started to subside.
As a single country, the main market for Bangladeshi garments is America. From January to November 2022, clothes worth 9.04 billion dollars went to the country. And in the same period of last year, 679 million dollars worth of products were exported. Exports decreased by 225 million dollars.
In these 11 months, overall US imports have decreased. According to the Commerce Department, imports fell by 22.4 percent. US apparel purchases from China fell by nearly 26 percent. And Vietnam’s exports decreased by 22.7 percent. Entrepreneurs said that the purchasing power of Americans has decreased due to inflation. Entrepreneurs said that many buyers were cautious in placing purchase orders even after observing the situation during the election in Bangladesh.
Abdullah Hill Rakib, Director of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA), says that due to war situation, inflation, corona epidemic, economic recession, etc., American buyers are not shopping the way they used to.
However, many entrepreneurs who export to America said that the situation has started to change. This entrepreneur said that the entire purchase order from American buyers has come to his factory.
Avins Group Director Shah Rayeed Chowdhury said that before the election, the order of work from America was not much, but after the election, it increased at a positive rate.
Entrepreneurs said that diplomatic efforts should be strengthened to maintain the position in this market, the main source of export income.
In this context, Surma Garments Managing Director Faisal Samad said, we had no idea about the order flow from America in the position we have reached as an industry. Orders are now higher than before.
Entrepreneurs urged the government to be proactive in obtaining duty-free facilities for the export of garments in the country.