Mexico and Bangladesh “have challenges and achievements in common”: Ambassador Abida Islam (II)

By. Sofia Salinas

Abida Islam, ambassador of Bangladesh in Mexico, gave details of the exponential growth that her country has had. “We have reduced poverty, which is now around only 20 percent.”

Here is the second part of the interview he gave me for the program The world for you.

“We have reduced poverty, which is now only around 20 percent, we have improved life expectancy, per capita income and Bangladesh now leads, only after China, the export of ready-made garments, profits are around of 30 billion, our per capita income is around 2,554.00 dollars and we have secured our food, we are self-sufficient in the production of fish, meat, eggs and vegetables.

Our literacy has grown. Our gross domestic product before COVID was above 8% and in fact during COVID growth has been 5%, for this year 2022 it is expected to be 6% and for 2025 the World Bank predicts that it will be again above 8%.

So as you can see Bangladesh has done very well in social and economic indicators.

The Economist has positioned Bangladesh as the 9th fastest growing economy among the top economies in the world. The World Economic Forum has also predicted it as the 24th economy by 2030

What opportunities are there in Bangladesh for business?

We have tried to engage with business leaders, in fact, Mexicans import our ready-made garments, leather products, jute products, and although we have talked with business people about our wide range of products, such as pharmaceuticals, we also export products pharmaceuticals, but only a little.

There also seems to be an interest in information technology, in fact last week we had a meeting with business people from Guadalajara and they showed interest in importing sea salt, toilet paper, diaper accessories, supermarket stores, furniture, processed food, as you can see it is a wide market that can probably catch your attention and we are planning to send a trade mission when the current situation is under control, we know that once a mission goes, we will find more areas where we can collaborate together

How do you feel in Mexico?

Oh, it’s a wonderful country, it’s ninety percent bigger than Bangladesh, I’ve been to some states and they’re really wonderful, the food is so good, the handicrafts are so colorful and beautiful, I really like it. And the weather, I must say the weather is like a bit tropical, I really enjoy it, I love the weather

What is your mission?

Well, during my tenure I would like to focus on getting more people in contact between Bangladesh and Mexico, after my arrival in August I have talked with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs about establishing a Consulate or visa office so that more people from Bangladesh can come and encourage more Mexicans to visit Bangladesh.

And I would like to exchange more culture between the 2 countries because they have a lot of cultural heritage and although Bangladesh is very young it also has a lot of cultural heritage of thousands of years, so I would love to connect the 2 cultures, connect people, people who want to visit Bangladesh are welcome, the recommendations, initiatives and support.

Thank you very much, thank you very much for inviting me to your program and thank you for your excellent questions, and I hope to have more opportunities in the future”, he concluded.


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