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It must be said that the present government has played a crucial role in bringing back the glorious past of jute. Consequently, the golden fiber of Bangladesh shows a beacon of hope and it is turning out to be an important agro-product as its demand is increasing abroad against the backdrop of the world’s inclination towards ‘green’ solutions. It is good to know that to promote jute globally, the country’s jute diversification centre is now offering 233 types of jute products. To increase demand for jute, the government has also made jute packaging mandatory for 17 products, fostering domestic support for the industry. But what is worrying is that despite big demand of jute and jute goods we are failing to exploit this export potential properly because we are lagging behind in production and diversification of jute and jute based products. Therefore, it is high time for the country to look forward to producing new diversified jute products to attract the foreign buyers.
Reportedly, the country has started producing viscose from jute as an alternative to cotton. Viscose is used to make yarn in cotton yarn spinning mill. Bangladesh imports viscose amounting to USD 700-800 million every year and this item is made of wood. The country has the potential to produce viscose from jute.
To this end, a factory is set up in Ghorasal of Narsingdi district for producing it under the government’s initiative. It will be possible to produce 35 tonnes of viscose in the factory annually. The project is a boon for the country’s jute economy since value addition to the raw material, when converted into viscose, will be substantially more than when either used in traditional jute mills or exported.
We believe, the country has all the possibilities to strengthen its position in the global market by enhancing its skilled manpower. For expanding the export market of jute goods, efficient and sustainable diversification of products is a must. Only a diversified range of jute products can fully revive the potential of jute-based products as a major export sector. However, for ensuring the optimum production of jute goods, we urge the authorities concerned to upgrade both the private and public jute mills. We also hope the government will provide encouragement to small growers and local entrepreneurs by involving JTDPC, media and private sector for producing better quality jute.