Canada – Bangladesh Relations

Diplomatic Relations and Official Representation

Canada established diplomatic relations with Bangladesh in 1972.

In Bangladesh, Canada is represented by the High Commission of Canada to Bangladesh in Dhaka.

In Canada, Bangladesh is represented by the High Commission for Bangladesh in Ottawa.

Bilateral Relations

Built upon shared values of democracy and pluralism, Canada’s relations with Bangladesh are focused on development cooperation, trade and investment, and people-to-people links.

Parliamentary Secretary Deepak Obhrai visited Bangladesh in July 2009, while the then-Minister of International Cooperation Bev Oda visited the country in January 2011. Bangladeshi Foreign Minister Dipu Moni visited Ottawa in February 2011.

Bilateral and Multilateral Cooperation

People-to-people links between Canada and Bangladesh are expanding. The Bangladeshi-Canadian community is estimated at over 100,000 and continues to make significant contributions to Canadian prosperity and to the multi-cultural fabric of Canada.

Canada and Bangladesh share a number of multilateral interests including trade liberalization through the WTO and support for international peacekeeping. Canada and Bangladesh also enjoy close ties as members of the UN and the Commonwealth.

Trade and Investment

Canada's commercial relationship with Bangladesh has grown dramatically over the last ten years. The value of bilateral merchandise trade has more than tripled going from $478 million in 2003 to nearly $1.7 billion in 2012. During this period, Canadian merchandise exports to Bangladesh have more than quadrupled and Bangladesh has become the second largest source of Canadian merchandise imports from South Asia, after India.

Canadian merchandise exports to Bangladesh were $525 million in 2012, down slightly from $552 million in 2011. Merchandise imports from Bangladesh were $1.1 billion in 2012, equal to 2011. Canada's main exports to Bangladesh include cereals, vegetables, iron and steel, oilseeds, fertilizers, machinery and electronic equipment. Agri-food was the leading export sector from Canada to South Asia in 2012, making Bangladesh the second largest Canadian agri-food buyer in South Asia after India.

The Canada-Bangladesh relationship is particularly important for the province of Saskatchewan. Saskatchewan's exports (mainly wheat, fertilizers and pulses) to Bangladesh have grown more than five-fold over the past 10 years, from $49 million in 2003 to $279 million in 2012.

Canada's main merchandise imports from Bangladesh include knit apparel, woven apparel, miscellaneous textile articles, headgear, fish and seafood, and footwear. Canada is a bright spot for Bangladeshi apparel, with garments and textile products making-up the bulk of Canada's merchandise imports from Bangladesh. Bangladesh has enjoyed duty-free market access since 2003. Potential trading opportunities to explore include expanding Canadian imports of ready-made garments, porcelain, jute and quality jute good, ceramic tableware and kitchenware.

Garments and textile products accounted for approximate 96% of Canada's merchandise imports from Bangladesh in 2012.

June 2013

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