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Sign TICFA to get duty-free access for garments – US
Jun '12
Bangladeshi garments will not get duty-free access to the US market unless Trade and Investment Cooperation Forum Agreement (TICFA) is signed, the US envoy to Bangladesh said.

Dan Mozena made this US line clear at a meeting with members of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA).

TICFA is a forum to identify and seeks to resolve obstacles to increase bilateral trade and investment between the two countries. However, the signing of the deal has been dragging on since four years.

Mozena put the blame squarely on Bangladesh for not signing the TICFA deal and said it was interpreted as Bangladesh walking back on a deal, back in the US.

Bangladesh has been demanding tariff-free access for its apparel products to the US markets, on the strengths of it being termed a Least Developed Country (LDC).

Most of the Bangladeshi exports to the US attract nil duty, however, garments, which is the major export revenue generator is not considered for duty-free status.

The ambassador also conveyed the negative perceptions in the US with regards to the violence in the country's garment sector.

Currently, Bangladeshi clothing exports enjoy tariff free status to the EU, Canada, Japan, China, and India.

Bangladesh has over 5,000 garment manufacturing units employing over 4 million workers, a majority of them women.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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