January 05, 2004


In a recent report it is feared that as tea export earnings falls by 60pc, spiking local demand may turn Bangladesh into an importer.

Tea was introduced in Bengal by the British in the late Sixteenth century. Historians tell that tea was distributed free to create addiction and taste. The British have established the industry here and Bangladesh is the 5th largest tea exporter in the world.

Last five years export figures show the significant drop because of the fact that "Internal consumption is going up 3.5 percent every year against 1 percent production growth".

But I think we should not be panicked with the situation as the Bangladeshis are preferring local tea because of its quality and cost effectiveness if nothing else.

Now steps should be taken to set up more tea plants and increase production. Bangladesh produces about 55 million kgs of tea a year on 119,000 hectares (297,500 acres) of land. Good entrepreneurship, proper management and help from government could increase the productivity to a great extent. Any investors or entrepreneurs listening?


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