HC celebrates emergence of Bangladesh as an exporting nation

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Journey from Jute to shipbuilding

Zubair Qureshi

Islamabad

Bangladesh High Commission on Saturday organized an event titled “From Jute to Shipbuilding: Emergence of Bangladesh as an Exporting Nation” with particular emphasis on the historic importance of jute being the primordial export item of Bangladesh.
In order to highlight the advancement and diversification of jute products of Bangladesh rather than raw jute, a wide array of finished jute items, including the biodegradable ‘Sonali Bag’ made from jute extracts, were put on display on the occasion.
While projecting the historic importance of jute, the event also focused on the growing export portfolio of Bangladesh that included, inter alia, apparels, ceramics, pharmaceuticals, ICT products/outsourcing, shipbuilding, etc.
A large number of guests, including the heads of diplomatic mission, politicians, local dignitaries, journalists, members of Bangladesh expatiate community as well as the Mission officials along with their spouses attended the event.
The venue of the display was tastefully decorated with artistic banners, standees and other artefacts. A large variety of jute products, such as, different type of bags, table mats, floor mats, shika, gunny bags, sacks, jute fabrics, baskets, handicrafts, purses, wall-hangings, calendar, special plastic bags made of jute (Sonali Bag), other daily usage items, raw jute, etc. were exhibited.
High Commissioner of Bangladesh to Pakistan Tarik Ahsan inaugurated the event. Welcoming the visitors, the High Commissioner said, the idea of the event was to celebrate jute, a vegetable fibre that once helped the provincial economy of the then Bengal integrate into the global economy as early as 19th century. Packaging materials made of jute became an indispensable element of world trade and transportation that flourished as a result of Industrial Revolution.
He added that, in recent years, due to environmental concerns over artificial products like synthetic fibres and plastics, jute has come back into spotlight for being a natural substance. Currently, Bangladesh is the largest exporter of jute in the world and is encouraging research and development of jute.
The welcome remarks were followed by a video show that presented a brief genesis of jute industry and its gradual modernization. The video also portrayed how Bangladesh, beginning as an exporter of primary products, is now evolving as an exporter of manufactured products and knowledge-based products.
The guests appreciated the initiative of the Mission for displaying the very unique export item of Bangladesh, with which many were not acquainted before. They marveled at the delicate cultivation and processing of the jute fibre, and evinced keen interest in the diversified jute products on display. The dignitaries demonstrated huge interests in the eco-friendly quality of jute and the jute products. They emphasized widening the use of biodegradable jute products for the protection of environment. They also stressed making ‘Sonali Bag’ economically more viable and popularization of that special product.