The country's apparel manufacturers want to reach the $100 billion export mark by 2030 through product diversification, more focus on technical textiles and man-made fibre products, according to their long-term plan.
"I think $100 billion worth of exports by 2030 is possible," Faruque Hassan, president of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA), told The Business Standard after revealing the new vision and BGMEA logo on Tuesday.
The BGMEA calls its new vision "BGMEA Sustainable Strategic Vision: 2030".
In reply to a query on whether the industry is ready to produce technical textiles such as automotive applications, medical textiles, geotextiles, agrotextiles, and protective clothing, Faruque Hassan said the industry is now ready to manufacture high value products.
"A number of factories are already in the production of high value items," he noted.
"For the first time, we participated in the Technical Textile Fair held in Germany this year. Now it's time to focus on product variations," he added.
The BGMEA president underscored the country's growing backward linkage and new investments in the spinning sector.
The country's apparel export amounted to around $42 billion in FY2021-22.
The BGMEA president acknowledged missing the $50 billion export target by 2021, attributing the failure to a fall in global apparel demand and then the onslaught of the pandemic.
"We are hopeful that exports will exceed the $50 billion mark by 2023," he said.
Miran Ali, vice president of the BGMEA, presented the keynote regarding the new logo.
In the new BGMEA logo, Miran Ali said the nine dots represent legacy, inclusivity, transparency, infrastructure, innovation, circularity, global network, brand and environment.
According to the new vision, apparel exporters will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30% by 2030 – a target in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The apparel-makers will also use at least 50% of sustainable materials mix and reduce 50% of blue water footprints by 2030.
According to the presentation, the sector will reduce energy consumption by 30% and will use at least 20% of renewable energy by 2030.
The apparel sector will generate 6 million jobs by 2030 through ensuring 100% institutionalisation of skill development, good health and well-being of employees.
Apparel manufacturers will invest $1 b by 2030 on sustainable communities, as noted in the presentation.
Faruque Hassan said an extensive action plan will be revealed soon about how the sector intends to achieve its targets.
Addressing the programme as chief guest, Jatiya Sangsad Speaker Shireen Sharmin Chowdhury said today's Bangladesh is no longer a "bottomless basket".
"Many attempts have been made to turn Bangladesh into a failed state, but in the course of time the country has thwarted the plots and touched the $50 billion export milestone," she added.
She also said that the BGMEA is a global organisation, as they operate in tandem with the global environment and this transformation, the announcement of a new vision, is a reflection of its keeping pace with the global environment.
"The BGMEA is moving forward with priority on sustainable development. At present, there is political stability in the country, which must be used to move forward," she added.
BGMEA former president Abdus Salam Murshedy MP and its current board members were also present on the occasion. ***