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India, Bangladesh sign MoU on textiles cooperation

India and Bangladesh Monday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on cooperation in textiles.

The Secretary, Ministry of Textiles, Zohra Chatterjee and the Sr. Secretary, Textiles, Bangladesh, Ashraful Moqbul have signed this MoU for cooperation in Textile sector, in the presence of the Union Minister for Textiles, Dr. Kavuru Sambasiva Rao, the Minister of Textiles Bangladesh, Abdul Latif Siddique and Minister of State for Petroleum & Natural Gas and Textiles, Panabaka Lakshmi, in New Delhi. 

"The MoU on Textiles sector collaboration, would act as a major trade facilitation mechanism, by establishing and institutional mechanism for collaboration through a Joint Working Group" Rao Monday told media at a joint press conference with his Bangladeshi counterpart in New Delhi. 

"The Joint Working Group develop collaborations between the Textiles Institutions in the two countries- between the skill building institutions, fashion institutes and research institutions," Rao added.

The ministers of two sides have also discussed the issues including enhancement of collaboration in textiles sector between the two countries by signing an other MoU on cotton security for Bangladesh textiles mills and the establishment of a successor organization for the International Jute Study Group in Dhaka through Joint efforts at the UNCTAD.

As regards, the Cotton Purchase Agreement, the final drafts have been exchanged between the 3 sides. "In 2013-14 cotton season, I have assured his Excellency that Bangladesh Textiles Mills would not have any difficulties in sourcing cotton from India."

The other item that both sides have discussed were the setting up of a successor organization to the International Jute Study Group whose term concludes in March 2014. 

India has in-principle agreed to support the Bangladesh initiative for a successor multilateral organization in Jute sector for taking forward the initiatives of the International Jute Study Group. 

"We would also be willing to form a joint front with the Government of Bangladesh in requesting prospective member countries to support a proposal for forming a new organization as a successor to IJSG at UNCTAD, as and when the conference is convened on request of the initiating countries," Rao said. 

India and Bangladesh produce above 90 percent of the world production of jute and allied fibers. On trade and importing countries like Turkey, China, Pakistan and others to give the organization a multinational look.

Rao said, India and Bangladesh have long shared a warm relationship. India and Bangladesh have a long history in textiles sector. 

"India's textile imports from Bangladesh in pursuance of the Prime Minister's visit 2011 have increased from USD 164 million in 2010 to USD 271 million in 2011 and USD 289 million in 2012." 

In 2013, statistic indicate an increase of 15 percent over 2012. Imports are increasing in chapter 61, 62 and 63 which are apparel articles both knitted and woven and also in home textiles. 

"I do hope that this strong performance trends in Bangladesh exports to India in textiles sector continue to develop in the coming years," Rao added.