Bangladesh’s Top 10 Imports

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Bangladesh imported US$40.5 billion worth of goods from around the globe in 2016, up by 74% since 2009 but down by -1.5% from 2015 to 2016

Bangladesh’s top 10 imports represent three-fifths (60.5%) of the overall value of its product purchases from other countries.

Bangladeshi imports represent a modest 0.25% of total global imports which totaled $16.473 trillion in 2016.

Given Bangladesh’s population of 156.2 million people, its total $40.5 billion in 2016 imports translates to roughly $260 in yearly product demand from every person in the country.

Bangladesh’s Top 10 Imports

Top 10

The following product groups represent the highest dollar value in Bangladesh’s import purchases during 2016. Also shown is the percentage share each product category represents in terms of overall imports into Bangladesh.

  1. Machinery including computers: US$5.3 billion (13.1% of total imports)
  2. Cotton: $4.6 billion (11.3%)
  3. Electrical machinery, equipment: $3.1 billion (7.6%)
  4. Iron, steel: $2 billion (5%)
  5. Mineral fuels including oil: $2 billion (5%)
  6. Plastics, plastic articles: $1.8 billion (4.5%)
  7. Vehicles : $1.7 billion (4.1%)
  8. Manmade staple fibers: $1.5 billion (3.7%)
  9. Animal/vegetable fats, oils, waxes: $1.5 billion (3.6%)
  10. Knit or crochet fabric: $987.4 million (2.4%)

Imported knit or crochet fabric had the fastest-growing increase in value among the top 10 import categories, up by 485.3% for the 7-year period starting in 2009.

In second place for improving import sales was the machinery including computers category, up by 180.3%. Trailing that was Bangladeshi imports of plastics which nevertheless delivered the third-fastest gain up by 142.7%.

Animal or vegetable fats and oils was a laggard among the top 10 Bangladeshi imports, posting a -20.8% decline from 2009 to 2016. The greatest drop was for mineral fuels including oil down by -29.4%.

Machinery

In 2016, Bangladeshi importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of machines including computers:

  1. Knitting/stitching machines: US$338 million (up 290%)
  2. Computers, optical readers: $292.2 million (up 194%)
  3. Yarn wash/clean/iron machines: $287.3 million (up 118.4%)
  4. Sewing machines, related furniture: $271.1 million (up 172.5%)
  5. Miscellaneous machinery: $227 million (up 442.7%)
  6. Air or vacuum pumps: $212.6 million (up 239.5%)
  7. Textile fiber work machines: $207.6 million (up 119.6%)
  8. Heavy machinery (bulldozers, excavators, road rollers): $179.3 million (up 796.6%)
  9. Printing machinery: $173.7 million (up 130.8%)
  10. Auxiliary machines: $170.1 million (up 198.1%)

Among these import subcategories, Bangladeshi purchases of heavy machinery such as bulldozers, excavators and road rollers (up 796.6%), miscellaneous machinery (up 442.7%) and knitting or stitching machines (up 290%) grew at the fastest pace from 2009 to 2016.

These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of imported machinery among Bangladeshi businesses and consumers.

Cotton

In 2016, Bangladeshi importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of cotton and related products:

  1. Woven cotton fabrics: US$1 billion (up 50%)
  2. Woven fabrics (85%+ cotton): $925.9 million (up 60.8%)
  3. Cotton (uncarded, uncombed): $903.7 million (down -20.9%)
  4. Yarn (85%+ cotton): $778.5 million (up 90.3%)
  5. Woven fabrics (mixed): $560.9 million (up 1,079%)
  6. Woven fabrics (under 85% cotton): $257.6 million (up 532.3%)
  7. Yarn (under 85% cotton): $103.2 million (up 483.1%)
  8. Other woven fabrics: $15.1 million (down -85.2%)
  9. Cotton sewing thread: $1.8 million (down -87%)
  10. Cotton (carded, combed): $860,000 (down -96%)

Among these import subcategories, Bangladeshi purchases of woven mixed fabrics (up 1,079%), woven fabrics under 85% cotton (up 532.3%) and yarn under 85% cotton (up 483.1%) grew at the fastest pace from 2009 to 2016.

These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of imported cotton among Bangladeshi businesses and consumers.

Electronics

In 2016, Bangladeshi importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of electronic equipment including consumer electronics:

  1. Phone system devices including smartphones: US$858.8 million (up 59.9%)
  2. Electrical converters/power units: $228.9 million (up 364.6%)
  3. Insulated wire/cable: $196.8 million (up 374.3%)
  4. Electric generating sets, converters: $188.7 million (down -22.5%)
  5. TV receivers/monitors/projectors: $161.2 million (up 242.9%)
  6. Electric storage batteries: $158.4 million (up 604.7%)
  7. Unrecorded sound media: $120.3 million (down -15%)
  8. Electric motors, generators: $109.5 million (up 445.6%)
  9. Lower-voltage switches, fuses: $97.8 million (up 261.9%)
  10. Electrical/optical circuit boards, panels: $97.1 million (up 257%)

Among these import subcategories, Bangladeshi purchases of electric storage batteries (up 604.7%), electric motors and generators (up 445.6%) and insulated wire or cable (up 374.3%) grew at the fastest pace from 2009 to 2016.

These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of imported electronics among Bangladeshi businesses and consumers.

Iron

In 2016, Bangladeshi importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of iron and steel:

  1. Hot-rolled iron or non-alloy steel products: US$428.3 million (up 33.4%)
  2. Iron or steel scrap: $411.2 million (up 119.6%)
  3. Flat-rolled iron or non-alloy steel products (plated/coated): $280.4 million (up 11.4%)
  4. Iron or non-alloy steel products (semi-finished): $204.4 million (down -18.5%)
  5. Flat-rolled other alloy steel products: $155.3 million (up 2,489%)
  6. Alloy steel bars, rods: $134.6 million (up 10,685%)
  7. Iron ore reduced products: $82.8 million (up 431.2%)
  8. Flat-rolled stainless steel items: $79.3 million (up 960.6%)
  9. Miscellaneous iron/non-alloy steel ingots: $37.5 million (up 9,090%)
  10. Cold-rolled iron or non-alloy steel products: $34.3 million (up 181.4%)

Among these import subcategories, Bangladeshi purchases of alloy steel bars, rods (up 10,685%), miscellaneous iron and non-alloy steel ingots (up 9,090%) and flat-rolled other alloy steel products (up 2,489%) grew at the fastest pace from 2009 to 2016.

These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of imported iron and steel among Bangladeshi businesses and consumers.



 
See also Bangladesh’s Top 10 Exports, Top Asian Export Countries and Highest Value US Export Products

Research Sources:
International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on April 24, 2017

The World Factbook, Country Profiles, Central Intelligence Agency. Accessed on April 24, 2017

Trade Map, International Trade Centre, www.intracen.org/marketanalysis. Accessed on April 24, 2017