Investor AB and ABB Sweden, two leading Swedish companies have expressed their keen interest in making investment in Bangladesh’s readymade garment industry alongside the power sector. The investment will improve the economic conditions of both the countries, said Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina during her visit to Sweden. Bangladesh is the second largest apparel exporter in the world.
During the meeting with Hasina, Investor AB Chairman Jacob Wallenberg and Vice-Chairperson Marcus Wallenberg, and ABB Sweden CEO Johan Söderström praised the Bangladesh Premier on the country’s socio-economic development under her leadership. Hasina was in Stockholm for Bangladesh-Sweden Investment Forum. During the meet, a memorandum of understanding was signed between Sweden-Bangladesh Business Council, Stockholm, and Nordic Chamber of Commerce and Industries to strengthen cooperation in the areas of trade and investment, Prime Minister’s press Secretary Ihsanul Karim told. Hasina while addressing a business dialogue of Bangladesh-Sweden Investment Forum said that she strongly encourages the leaders of Swedish business and industry to partner with them in investment, trade, and innovative businesses for a shared prosperity.
Together they can bring a change in the lives of millions in both their countries. Setting up of business in Bangladesh is comparatively cheaper, said Hasina while adding that the country has duty free and quota free access to the markets of Australia, India, EU, New Zealand and Japan. Apart from the development of hi-tech parks, 100 Special Economic Zones (SEZs) will also be set up in Bangladesh. Investor AB is a Swedish investment company, founded in 1916 and controlled by the Wallenberg family through their Foundation Asset Management Company FAM. The company owns a controlling stake in several large Swedish companies with smaller positions in a number of other firms.Earlier, Karl-Johan Persson, CEO of Swedish retail giant H&M met the Bangladesh Prime Minister in Stockholm. During the meeting, the Prime Minister highlighted various steps of her Government for the development of the garment industry in Bangladesh. She also urged the buyers to raise the prices of RMG products saying that this would eventually benefit the workers. It may be mentioned here that Swedish retailer H&M imports readymade garments worth $5 bn from Bangladesh annually.