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Bangladesh Sees Growing Bike Export to EU But Brexit Looms

Sales & Trends

DHAKA, Bangladesh – After the bicycle export from Bangladesh to Europe dropped slightly in 2016, the country’s bike industry has found the growth path once again in 2017 and during the start of this year. However, as the UK is by far the biggest customer of the country’s exporting bike makers, Brexit looms.

Bangladesh Sees Growing Bike Export to EU But Brexit Looms
Bangladesh is highly dependent on bicycle export to UK with 51% of export value destined for that country. – Photo Meghna Group

Bangladesh is EU’s third biggest (conventional) bicycle supplier (after Taiwan and Cambodia). The country saw its export (money-wise) grow by 9% in the period of July 2017 to February 2018. Bangladesh’s bicycle makers, among which Meghna Group is the biggest, can export duty free to the European Union member states as the country benefits from its Generalized System of Preferences status of GSP+.

11% market share

In 2016 Bangladesh exported some 731,000 bicycles to the European Union. Eurostat data states that this was 1% down on the 2015 total of 738,000 exported bicycles. According to a recent report by the Bangladesh Independent, that quoted Mizanur Rahman, Meghna Group CEO and Bangladesh Bicycle Merchants Assembling and Importers Association President, Bangladesh holds a 11% market share in the total EU import of bicycles.

The country’s bicycle export saw a growth of 9% during the period July 2017 to February 2018. Bangladesh exported bicycles worth nearly USD 57 million; especially to the EU markets. The same period in 2016 – 2017, the earnings totalled USD 52.54 million.

Bangladesh highly dependent on UK export

According to data of the Bangladesh Export Promotion Bureau (EPB), during the named 2017 – 2018 period, the UK imported the highest number of bicycles from Bangladesh for a total value of USD 28.88 million. It means that Bangladesh is highly dependent on its UK export as 51% of the total export value of USD 57 million is destined for the UK. It raises the question on what’s to happen here once Brexit becomes a fact. And in particular if by then the UK grants the Bangladesh bicycle industry the same ‘preffered’ (import) duty free status as the European Union currently does.

By the way; Germany is Bangladesh 2nd biggest customer with exports worth of USD 10.08 million, followed by Denmark (USD 4.05 million), India (USD 4.14 million) and Belgium (USD 3.29 million).

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