Western and Central Africa
Eastern and Southern Africa
Eastern Europe and Central Asia
Bangladesh has been cited as one of the next eleven countries that are likely to follow the ‘BRICs’ in leading world growth. With its economy growing steadily, Bangladesh has the potential to become an important global centre for the service industries. The information technology (IT) and information technology enabled services (ITES) sector in Bangladesh offers a strong value proposition, with a large pool of trained engineers and operators. Despite the fast growth of the sector within Bangladesh, however, it remains a marginal contributor to Bangladeshi exports. The NTFII project, funded by the Government of the Netherlands, is supporting the IT and ITES sector in Bangladesh to improve its export competitiveness and benefit from business links with selected markets in Europe.
Bangladesh is supporting the sector to establish long-term and sustainable relationships with businesses in Denmark, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. Through a thorough selection process, ITC identified 40 Bangladeshi companies which are already exporting, or have the potential to do so, to become beneficiaries of project activities. A series of business-linkage and matchmaking events are scheduled to take place on a yearly basis in the three selected European markets. The 40 companies benefit from expert coaching on export marketing, improvement in their promotion materials and organized business meetings, as well as a new catalog and online directory with updated and professionally presented vendors’ profiles which are being used to market the IT and ITES offering of Bangladesh in the three target countries.
Trade support institutions (TSIs) play an important role in making connections for Bangladeshi IT and ITES enterprises. The NTF II project is supporting the Bangladesh Association of Software and Information Services (BASIS) and Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) to set up a viable business-linkage service to benefit of Bangladeshi SMEs. In order to achieve this, the TSIs will receive training in a number of areas including designing the business linkage service as a viable support service for SMEs; training the TSIs’ staff to manage the business linkage service effectively; coaching TSIs to undertake demand side analysis as a strong basis for the new service offering; and building strong links between the Bangladeshi TSIs and partner TSIs in the selected European markets.
Branding of Bangladesh’s and ITES sector has historically been limited, although it is recognized that a strong brand is needed in order to strengthen the position of the industry on the international markets. The industry (through BASIS) and the country (through DCCI) will be supported through the NTF II project to develop a more effective and comprehensive brand for the industry. These efforts are supported with specific public relations activities and mobilizing industry analysts.
The Netherlands Trust Fund II (NTF II) is based on a fouryear partnership agreement between ITC and CBI. It is funded by the Government of the Netherlands and is implemented in close partnership with the Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) and the Bangladesh Association of Software & Information Services (BASIS).