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Textile and apparel exports slump by 21%

As per National Board of Revenue, imports from China slumped 21 per cent year-on-year in volume in the one and a half months to February 15 amid supply disruption caused by the Coronavirus. Businesses imported 36 lakh tonne of products in the first seven months of fiscal 2019-20, down 19 per cent from a year earlier. In monetary terms, imports also declined this year compared with the same period a year ago, said the revenue administration in a report on the possible impact of the outbreak in the world's second largest economy.

Bangladesh's main export earner apparel and textile industry is highly dependent on China for cotton yarn and fabrics, textile fabrics and garments accessories. It also suggested considering alternative sources to import parts of mobile phones to support the budding mobile handset assembling sector.

China is the biggest trading partner of Bangladesh and the biggest source for imports. The world's second largest economy accounted for more than a fifth of the country's imports of $56 billion in fiscal 2018-19, Bangladesh Bank data showed. The NBR report comes amid growing concerns among businesses about potential supply disruption of raw materials, intermediate goods and other materials brought about by the coronavirus outbreak in December last year.

The NBR report assessed the possible effects of the coronavirus pandemic on export and imports by taking seven top-ranked inbound and outbound items to and from China.