The furniture industry in Bangladesh is poised for a transformative journey as market players rally to overcome challenges and pave the way for growth. In a recent discussion titled “Future of the Furniture Industry in Bangladesh,” industry experts highlighted the sector’s potential and the concerted efforts being made to propel it forward.
According to insiders, the industry has grappled with hurdles such as high tariffs on imported raw materials and a shortage of quality components. However, resilient and determined market players are actively seeking solutions to establish a competitive edge in the global market.
Salim H Rahman, Chairman of the Bangladesh Furniture Industry Owners Association (BFIOA), acknowledged the reliance on imported raw materials and the subsequent impact on production costs. To address this, Rahman proposed the introduction of partially bonded warehouse facilities for the furniture sector. This strategic move is expected to drive furniture exports and contribute to the industry’s sustainable growth.
The furniture industry in Bangladesh is already a significant player in the country’s economy, with over 40,000 small and large companies actively involved in production and marketing. Notably, non-branded cottage, micro, and small enterprises control the majority of the Tk 30,000 crore market (approximately USD 3.5 billion). However, well-established brands like Hatil, Akhtar Furnishers, Partex, and Regal Furniture continue to make their mark, highlighting the potential for expansion and market diversification.
Employment prospects in the furniture sector are also noteworthy, as it stands as the second-largest job provider in Bangladesh after the garments and textiles industry. Approximately 2 million individuals find employment within this dynamic sector. Rahman, who also serves as the Chairman of Hatil, emphasized the importance of attracting foreign investment to further bolster the industry’s growth trajectory.
Industry experts participating in the discussion panel underscored the need for fair import duties on furniture and stressed the significance of integrating the local furniture market into the global value chain. They called for continued government support to address challenges and create an enabling environment for the industry’s progress.
Despite the obstacles, the furniture industry in Bangladesh has demonstrated resilience and witnessed a significant surge in exports over the past six years. In the fiscal year 2021-2022 alone, furniture from Bangladesh found its way to approximately 61 countries, highlighting the immense potential for further growth and expansion in international markets.
As the global furniture market continues to thrive, reaching a value of $548.38 billion in 2021, Bangladesh aims to strengthen its position and increase its contribution. The industry’s current share stands at a modest 0.03 percent, based on data from the BFIOA. However, with the insights gained from industry leaders and strategic collaborations, Bangladesh is poised to chart an upward trajectory, establishing itself as a key player in the global furniture market.
The journey toward progress and growth in the furniture industry has commenced, and Bangladesh stands ready to seize the opportunities that lie ahead. With innovation, quality craftsmanship, and collaborative efforts, the future of the furniture industry in Bangladesh looks promising.