Hasina declares handicrafts as 'product of the year' for 2024

The initiative aims to create employment opportunities for women, the prime minister said during the opening of the Dhaka International Trade Fair

Staff Correspondentbdnews24.com
Published : 21 Jan 2024, 08:57 AM
Updated : 21 Jan 2024, 08:57 AM

The government has designated Bangladeshi handicrafts as the product of the year for 2024.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina hoped the initiative would contribute to women's empowerment by creating roles for them both at home and in society during the inauguration of the Dhaka International Trade Fair on Sunday.

"In an effort to provide employment opportunities for women, I am declaring handicrafts as the product of the year."

The 28th edition of the trade fair is taking place at the Bangabandhu Bangladesh-China Friendship Exhibition Centre in Purbachal.

During the inaugural ceremony, Hasina said the focus in diplomacy will now be economic rather than political during her latest term in office.

She also stressed the importance of diversifying Bangladesh's export basket beyond its current reliance on a limited range of products, highlighting jute and leather as potential trade revenue sources.

The prime minister also reflected on the country's economic resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic. “While other countries faced distress, Bangladesh's economic progress remained evident. Our government is continually striving to enhance the purchasing power of our citizens."

The fair is set to run from Jan 21 to Feb 20.

Organised annually by the Ministry of Commerce and the Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) since 1995, the fair typically begins on Jan 1 each year. However, this year's start was delayed due to the Jan 7 national election.

The EPB said several countries, including India, Pakistan, Thailand, Turkey, Malaysia, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Nepal, will be part of this year's trade fair.

The emphasis is on exhibiting local products and identifying significant export opportunities in diverse markets.