It may sound improbable; however, the impact of global outbreak of COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on Bangladesh, with its overall exports crashing to an all-time low in the last 40 years, claimed media reports!
And, as expected, the receipts from apparel exports — apparel sector is considered the backbone of Bangladesh’s economy and accounts for lion’s share of total exports – experts believe have a lot to do in this.
According to the figures released by the country’s Export Promotion Bureau (EPB), Bangladesh’s export receipts stood at a meagre US $ 520.01 million in April.
“The magnitude of the devastation is way higher and the situation is really horrific,” summed up the situation Dr. Rubana Huq, President of the country’s apex garment makers’ body, the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA), who underlined that the data only partially reveals the actual picture of devastation.
As per BGMEA, which came out with the apparel export figures a few days earlier, the country’s total apparel export in April this year was a mere US $ 366.5 million, compared to what was US $ 2.42 billion in the same period last year.
“It was estimated that the RMG export in April would decline by 70-80 per cent as economic activities on both the supply and the demand sides were disrupted due to the pandemic,” said Executive Director of Policy Research Institute of Bangladesh Ahsan H. Mansur, who expressed apprehensions that apparel exports in May too could remain the same as lots of orders have been cancelled while the volume of new orders was not enough to bring about any substantial change in overall exports and revenue earnings.