BGMEA urged IFC to provide concessional loans to garment and textile sector

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The Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) on Sunday called on the International Finance Corporation (IFC) to extend a concessional loan to the RMG industry for the development of backward linkage industries, strengthening capacity in the manufacture of value-added non-cotton products and technological upgrading.

BGMEA made the request when IFC’s new Country Director for Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal, Martin Holtmann, paid a courtesy call on BGMEA Chairman, Faruque Hassan, at the latter’s office in Gulshan, according to a press release.

BGMEA Directors Tanvir Ahmed and Inamul Haq Khan (Bablu), IFC Senior Country Manager Nuzhat Anwar, Senior Investment Manager Ehsanul Azim and Investment Manager Farjad Siddqui were also present at the meeting.

They had discussions on different issues in the garment industry, including its progress in the areas of workplace safety, environmental sustainability and worker welfare, the statement added.

The future priorities of Bangladesh’s garment industry, especially the emphasis on product diversification, market and innovation in product development and process optimization, were also discussed at the meeting.

BGMEA Chairman, Faruque Hassan, stressed the need to invest in the backhaul industry to develop its own capacity, as Bangladesh will have to deal with double-transformation rules of origin in the post- LDCs.

The industry is also prioritizing the shift from cotton to value-added non-cotton products, including technical textiles, and this shift will require technological upgrading and skills development in the sector, he said.

The BGMEA Chairman urged IFC to provide concessional loans for investments in backward linkage industries, technology upgrading and innovations.

He also focused on financing SMEs who primarily need low-cost funds as they often cannot benefit from regular financing programs due to rigorous due diligence.

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