No politics in GSP denial for Bangladesh, says US Ambassador Bernicat

No politics in GSP denial for Bangladesh, says US Ambassador Bernicat

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Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed sees politics behind the US decision to deny Bangladesh products GSP, but US Ambassador in Dhaka Marcia Bernicat disagrees.After visiting a few readymade garment factories in Gazipur on Tuesday, Bernicat told reporters that ‘there was no politics behind the US decision’.”Bangladesh has tried hard to fulfil the 16 conditions laid down by the US for revival of preferential trade facility. Much progress has been made but much remains to be done,” she said.”This decision is not about politics, it is about workplace safety and labour rights and issues related to industries.”After the USTR website said on Tuesday that Bangladesh was not among the 122 countries that had qualified for the facility, Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed blamed the US decision on political considerations.“We’ve fulfilled our conditions set out by the US for renewal of the GSP. We have nothing more to do. I don’t see reasons other than political ones,” Ahmed had said.
The US stopped extending the GSP for Bangladeshi products in 2013 after the Tazreen factory fire and the Rana Plaza disaster that killed hundreds of garment workers.Bernicat said Bangladesh made efforts for improving workplace environment and hoped the country would soon be able to fulfil the conditions.

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