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Economy

Bangladesh aims to leap beyond textiles with help from South Korea

Garment export leader expands into tech, energy and other emerging industries

Workers at a garment factory in Bangladesh. South Korean companies, whose transfer of technical know-how helped Bangladesh become the world’s second-largest textiles exporter, are looking at the potential of other emerging sectors. (Photo by Akira Kodaka)

DHAKA -- The country that helped Bangladesh catapult it to an apparel export powerhouse is now aiming to diversify the South Asian nation away from the sector that has sustained it for decades: textiles.

South Korea's prime minister, Lee Nak-yon, who concluded a three-day visit to Dhaka in mid-July, told a business audience here that his country would lend its support for Bangladesh to prosper in new industries by slashing its reliance on ready-made garment exports that made up more than 80% of its overseas sales of $40 billion for the year ending in June.

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