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US, Bangladesh sign trade cooperation forum agreement
Nov '13
Ambassador Froman
Ambassador Froman
The United States and Bangladesh have signed the Trade and Investment Cooperation Forum Agreement (TICFA), aimed at expanding trade and strengthening economic relations between the two countries.
TICFA would serve as a forum to monitor trade and investment relations between the two countries and identifying opportunities for expanding trade and investment between them.
The Forum shall consider specific trade and investment matters of interest to both the countries, and also identify and work to remove impediments to trade and investments between the countries.
The agreement also provides for seeking the advice of the private sector and civil society, where appropriate, on matters related to the Forum’s work.
The agreement was signed by Bangladesh Secretary of Commerce Mahbub Ahmed and Acting Deputy U.S. Trade Representative Wendy Cutler, in Washington D.C., according to a press release from the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman said, “With this agreement, the U.S. and Bangladesh will more regularly work together to address issues of concern in our trade and investment relationship.”
“Importantly, we’ll also be able to track and discuss Bangladeshi efforts to improve worker safety and worker rights. This is an important priority for the United States as Bangladesh seeks to prevent more tragedies in its readymade garment sector,” Mr. Froman added.
Bangladesh is currently the 59th largest goods trading partner of the United States, with total bilateral goods trade touching US$ 5.4 billion in 2012.  
While the U.S. is likely to stress on compliance issues, the Bangladesh side may seek early revoking of suspension of its Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) status, as well as inclusion of garments in the GSP, during discussions under TICFA.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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