The ongoing gas crisis in the country that emerged as a fallout of the global situation is temporary and will subside from next January, ending the disruption in industrial production, said Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi.
Ceramics production was hampered due to gas shortage but the situation is improving, he said while addressing the opening ceremony of the Third Ceramic Expo Bangladesh 2022 at the International Convention City Bashundhara in the capital on Thursday.
The international expo participated by ceramic industries from around the world is being held from 10am to 7pm every day till 26 November.
Akij Ceramics is the principal sponsor of the expo while Sheltech Ceramics and DBL Ceramics are platinum sponsors and Mir Ceramics, Abul Khair Ceramics and BHL Ceramics are co-sponsors.
Terming the ceramic industry a potential sector of the country, Tipu Munshi said the locally produced ceramic products meet 85% of the demand in the country.
There are currently more than 70 ceramic factories in Bangladesh and the industry is expanding rapidly – the sector has seen about 200% production growth this year, he said.
Ceramics made in Bangladesh are in great demand abroad as well. Currently, Bangladesh exports ceramic products to 50 countries earning about $1 billion, Munshi said.
The government will provide full support to the businesses to help boost the production and export of ceramic products, he said.
"We will hold talks with the traders regarding the obstructions they are facing in expanding exports of ceramics. Problems will be identified and resolved quickly," said the minister.
About 120 companies from 20 countries including Bangladesh have been taking part with about 150 brands in the three-day ceramic expo organised by Bangladesh Ceramic Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BCMEA).
At the inaugural event, organisers informed that the ceramic sector is gradually consolidating its position among the export products of the country. Industry entrepreneurs are eager to further advance the promising sector.
BCMEA President Shirajul Islam Mollah said more than 70 factories of ceramics, tableware, tiles and sanitary ware have already been established in the country. The sales in the local market are about Tk8,000 crore annually.
Investment in the ceramic sector increased by nearly 20% in the last 10 years. Export income is increasing in the sector along with investment, he said.
There is an investment of more than TK15,000 crore with about five lakh people directly and indirectly involved in this sector, the BGMEA president added.