Ladies and Gentlemen
Assalamu Alaikum and Good Evening
I am absolutely delighted to join you all at this closing ceremony of Brandwitz 2016. This great initiative, conceived, nurtured and propelled by the Institute of Business Administration Communication Club (IBACC), has been quite successful over the years in engaging young minds in a creative space to bring solutions to real-life business challenges. Let me thank IBACC that has been undertaking this endeavor since 2008 and adding new thoughts and stimulus to this competition every year, suiting the needs of contemporary business realities. While I congratulate all the participants of the BrandWitz 2016, my warmest felicitation goes to the winners.
This year Brandwitz has a done a momentous job of showcasing the intricacies of the RMG sector by challenging the participants with a particular case-study. The content has been timely and thoughtful, given that the immense contributions of this particular sector to our economy, employment and empowerment. While I am a part of the Government today, I fondly recall my long, deep and intimate association with this sector that goes back almost two decades. Many of our peers were faltering in confidence at that time about the prospects of manufacturing industry in Bangladesh, least to mention about RMG and Textile. With diligence, innovation and commitment, our generation of entrepreneurs proved many of them incorrect – both in Bangladesh and beyond. Bangladesh has now emerged as an important player in global RMG supply chain. As someone passionately involved in this area, I am overwhelmed to see the successes and triumphs of this industry.
RMG industry is inextricably linked with Bangladesh’s success story-not only in economic terms but also in projecting country’s image. “Made in Bangladesh” labels are now commonplace in American and European stores. McKinsey has called Bangladesh the “next China” and predicted that Bangladeshi garment exports, now about $28 billion a year, could be doubled by 2020. We have, however, enough space to be filled in by the young talents endowed with new ideas who could take this sector forward through their innovation and creativity. I have no iota of doubts that in near future Bangladesh would not only be the export leader for world’s best retailers but also have our own brand like Zara, H&M, C&A, Camaieu and so on. I envisage that one day people around the world will look for Bangladeshi brands and Dhaka will emerge as a fashion capital, like Paris and Rome. I am happy that BrandWitz is one of such initiatives that have been creating opportunities for our future leaders to take our business in right directions.
In this dynamically evolving business setting, there is no alternative to ‘branding’ if one wishes to grow, prosper and sustain. Amidst the intense competition, businesses must be innovative in ensuring high quality products and services. It is not just business, it is in a way branding of a country to the wider world. I feel optimistic and assured considering that young, talented, well-educated, brilliant brains are coming forward in taking the responsibility to brand Bangladesh.
Bangladesh emerged from an ‘empty basket’ as ironically labelled by many during the early days of our nation building. Now Bangladesh is an economic basket of wonder – widely recognised as ‘development surprise’. Bangladesh has been termed by Goldman Sachs “Next 11” and has also been featured in JP Morgans’ ”Frontier Five”. Our branding is not merely limited to economic fronts, our achievements in social sectors have also captured global attention. Bangladesh has earned global applause and recognition in its role and contributions for women empowerment, poverty alleviation, climate change, water security, ICT and even in migration. These all are positive branding of our country, which in turn has been raising the image and profile of our country to the rest of the world. Our government is all for reaslising ‘Sonar Bangla’ as dreamt by the Father of Nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
I thank you all.
Joy Bangla, Joy Bangabandhu