Sustainable economic development, trade and investment - Bangladesh

Sustainable economic development, trade and investment

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The Netherlands and Bangladesh are long-lasting and trusted partners in doing sustainable, inclusive and responsible business together. Particularly, the Netherlands positions itself as a development and business partner for a.o. water, agriculture and garments. 

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With 170 million inhabitants, an average annual GDP growth rate of >7% during the past decade and a geostrategic position in Asia, Bangladesh is increasingly relevant for doing business. As the country is set to graduate from the Least-Developed-Countries group in 2026, the bilateral relation between the Netherlands and Bangladesh is transforming from a relation based on development cooperation into a relation based primarily on mutual trade and investments.

Water and agriculture are sectors in which companies from the Netherlands have world-renowned expertise. Informing these companies about the opportunities in Bangladesh and linking them to the right partners can help them enter the market. Despite a strong traditional position in these sectors, the Embassy remains flexible to cater to the needs of other sectors too.

The Netherlands is fully committed to sustainable trade and investment: doing business in global value chains requires a responsible mindset from all partners involved. In this context the Netherlands Embassy encourages companies to integrate Responsible Business Conduct (RBC) in all their operations and management when doing business in Bangladesh. This means that companies have to take into account their full footprint within the value chain.

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ne of the sectors in which the Netherlands and Bangladesh cooperate intensively on RBC is the readymade-garment (RMG) sector. Since the Rana Plaza incident took place, a much more sustainable and responsible value chain has risen in which stakeholders work together on labor rights, workplace safety and environmental impact. Today, Bangladesh has some of the most compliant and green factories in the world.

The Netherlands looks forward to a bright economic future in Bangladesh, in which plenty of jobs exist and high quality products are produced. Taking into account the demographic dividend, the Netherlands focuses on youth and female entrepreneurship as a way to create jobs, innovative private sector-driven solutions and future business opportunities.

For more information on this topic, contact the embassy