THE Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) expects an increase of foreign investments to Cebu, saying the province remains an attractive investment destination for foreign capitalists.
Last Tuesday, CCCI’s trustees welcomed the visit of Bangladesh Ambassador to the Philippines Asad Alam Siam, the chamber’s first engagement with Bangladesh.
According to CCCI president Melanie Ng, Siam’s visit to Cebu aims to discover opportunities and to network with the chamber as a gateway to more economic possibilities.
CCCI’s closed-door meeting with the Bangladesh Ambassador centered on trade opportunities between Bangladesh and the Philippines, specifically Cebu.
“This is the first engagement we have with Bangladesh. We were pleased to find out that Bangladesh is one of the largest garments exporter in the world. There’s opportunities for cooperation in pharmaceuticals and ship building,” said Ng.
Garment exports is the backbone of Bangladesh’s industrial sector. It accounted for more than 80 percent of total exports and surpassed $25 billion in 2016.
Steady export growth in the garment sector combined with remittances from overseas Bangladeshis - which totaled about $15 billion and eight percent of gross domestic product in 2015 - are key contributors to Bangladesh’s sustained economic growth and rising foreign exchange reserves, according to the Central Intelligence Agency.
Ng said Ambassador Siam promised to be back in Cebu soon. He said he will invite Bangladesh business owners to explore the Philippines and Cebu for possible trade ventures or business-to-business matching.
“We also invited him to take part in the Cebu Business Month 2018,” said the CCCI official.
Bangladesh is the third largest trading partner of the Philippines in South Asia.
Economic growth in Bangladesh placed increasing demand for utility vehicles, construction materials, computers, household appliances, farm machinery, automobile spare parts and houseware from the Philippines.