Brief on Bangladesh-German Trade

Bangladesh and Germany are maintaining an excellent bilateral trade relationship.

Germany is the largest trading partner of Bangladesh in Europe and the second largest globally. Bangladesh currently holds the 37th place in the ranking of Germany’s trading partner and its significance has been increasing over a number of years (2013: 41th place). Ranking places for import to Germany for some other Asian countries are: China – 3rd place, India (27), Taiwan (26), Malaysia (28), Vietnam (29), Hong Kong (57), Pakistan (59) and Sri Lanka (76) (Source: The German Federal Statistical Office). (Statistics for 2015 are not yet available)

The so-called “Everything But Arms” policy of the European Union is granting Bangladesh duty-free access to the EU for all products, except arms and ammunition.

In its trade with Germany – as with other Western trading partners – Bangladesh has for years recorded a large surplus. In the calendar year 2014 the trade volume increased by 12% to around 4.4 billion Euro. Exports from Bangladesh to Germany amounted to about EUR 3.8 billion in 2014 (2013: EUR 3.46 billion) in comparison with German exports to Bangladesh of EUR 599 million for the same period.

More than 92% of imports from Bangladesh are textile products. German exports mainly consisting of machines (2014: 46%), electro-technical items and products (16%) and chemicals and related products (15%).

2.0. The figures for trade with Germany for the last few years are given below:


(Values in US$ million)

Financial Year Target Export (actual achievement) Import
2007-2008 2,350.00 2,174.74 410.86
2008-2009 2,621.26 2,269.75 406.47
2009-2010 2,627.36 2,187.35 469.55
2010-2011 2,430.33 3,438.70 691.30
2011-2012 4,259.34 3,891.08 503.4 (July-May)
2012-2013 4,448.25 4,195.35  
2013-2014 4,798.79 5,018.96  


5,901.96 4,154.63 (up to April ’14)  

(Source: EPB, Ministry of Commerce for export and Bangladesh Bank for import)




  1. Investment from Germany to Bangladesh


Total direct investment in Bangladesh, to date, amounts to about Euro 560.147 million, which include 100 % German Investment as well as of joint venture projects.


  1. Socio-economic development of Bangladesh

Bangladesh has seen many achievements over the past decade

The economy has been growing by more than 6 % annually for more than a decade.


The country has achieved some of the largest reductions ever seen anywhere in curbing deaths among infants, children and women giving birth.


It has lifted millions out of poverty and maintained sustained economic growth. The reduction of poverty, the most difficult development challenge of our times, has shown remarkable progress in Bangladesh. The poverty level has plunged from 57 % in 1991 to below 25 % in 2014. More importantly, the poverty reduction strategy in Bangladesh has achieved the rare success of benefiting the extreme poor most.


The swiftness of achievement and the persistent pattern led the Department for International Development (DFID) and USAID to estimate that extreme poverty may come down to almost zero (2.4 %) by 2030.


The country’s attainment of UN Millennium Development Goals is quoted in development circles as an example of how so much can be done with so little.


The World Bank reclassified Bangladesh as a lower-middle-income country on 1 July 2015.


The 2014 Global Gender Gap Report, issued by the World Economic Forum (WEF), notes that Bangladesh has climbed up to 68th position, jumping 23 places from 91st position over the last eight years. The report attributes this achievement to the participation of women in both politics and the workforce


Right from the inception of Bangladesh as an independent state, Germany has proven an invaluable development partner, with the potential for cooperation poised to expand further in the coming years.