Following the increasing demand, many plastic industries have turned into high-value plastic goods production units.
"Now many of the buyers for high-value plastic goods are shifting from China to Bangladesh. Besides, buyers from Brazil are also shifting for their sourcing to our country," said President of Bangladesh Plastic Goods Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BPGMEA) Md Jashim Uddin.
He said many buyers from our traditional and nontraditional markets are now demanding high-value plastic products.
Mr Jashim Uddin, also Vice Chairman of Bengal Group of Industries, said they are eyeing Bangladesh instead of China for good quality and competitive price ranges.
According to the BPGMEA, Bangladesh exports plastic products including shopping bags, butcher bags, PVC pipe, polyethylene sheets, ball-point pens, tooth brush, toys, hanger, hand gloves, artificial flowers, table covers, computer accessories, waste baskets and wall clocks, etc.
Managing Director of FH International Ltd Ferdous Wahed said to meet the growing demand their company is going to make high-priced toys, hanger, tooth-brush, PVC pipe, computer accessories and wall clocks.
He said along with traditional market the new buyers from Latin America and South Africa are also showing their interest in Bangladeshi high-value plastic products.
The country's plastic products are being exported to more then 50 countries including Poland, China, Belgium, France, Germany, Canada, Spain, Australia, Japan, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Italy, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Malaysia and Hong Kong.
Former president of BPGMEA Shamim Ahmed said the Chinese plastic manufacturers have been shifting their production base to low-cost locations. He said Bangladesh is an ideal place for Chinese investors, but poor infrastructure threatens to mar the prospects.
BPGMEA data show at present, there are about 5,000 plastic industries in the country of which 3,500 are small and 1,500 medium-sized.
Of the plastic factories, 65 % are located in Dhaka while 20 % in Chittagong, 10 per cent in Narayanganj and 5 per cent in Khulna, Comilla, Bogra and Rajshahi.
KDS, DAF, RFL, Bengal, Partex, Talukdar, Unique and Anowar are among the leading brands in the country.
Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) data showed Bangladesh has exported plastic goods worth USD 12.65 million in the first two months of the current fiscal year.
It also showed that in July-August of the current financial year, the plastic goods exports posted a 3.10 % growth compared to the same period a year ago.
The sector made shipment of goods worth nearly USD 84.51 million in the last fiscal year, according to the EPB.
Source: Daily "The Financial Express", Dhaka; 28 Sept 201(Syed Rashid Ali, Karachi, Pakistan)