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Bangladesh, officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh is
a country in South Asia. Bangladesh is a unitary state and parliamentary
democracy. Direct elections in which all citizens, aged 18 or over, can vote
are held every five years for the unicameral parliament known as Jatiya
Sangsad or House of Nation. Currently, the parliament has 350 members
including 50 reserved seats for women, elected from single-member
constituencies and each of the members called a Member of Parliament
(MP). For conducting the parliamentary session there is a Speaker and Deputy
Speaker. The Prime Minister, as the head of government, forms
the cabinet and runs the day-to-day affairs of the state. The President is the head
of state but mainly a ceremonial post elected by the parliament. The
highest judicial body is the Supreme Court. Justices are appointed by the
President. Bangladesh has a three-tier local government system. The whole
country is divided into Eight major administration divisions headed by
commissioners. Divisions are subdivided into sixty-four districts (Zila) and
the capital of the districts is called a district seat (Zila Sadar). The Districts are
further sub-divided into 493 sub-districts or upazila
Bangladesh pursues a moderate foreign policy that places heavy reliance on
multinational diplomacy, especially at the United Nations. In 1974
Bangladesh joined both the Commonwealth of Nations and the United
Nations and has since been elected to serve two terms on the Security
Council in 1978–1979 and 2000–2001. In the 1980s, Bangladesh played a
lead role in founding the South Asian Association for Regional
Cooperation (SAARC) in order to swell relations with other South Asian
states. Bangladesh's most important and complex foreign relationships are
with India. These relationships are informed by historical and cultural ties and

form an important part of the domestic political discourse. Bangladesh also
enjoys relatively warm ties with the People's Republic of China. And extreme
relations with Japan from the liberation war.
Although two-thirds of Bangladeshis are farmers, Bangladesh is in the
process of a transition from a predominantly agrarian economy to an
industrial and service economy. The private sector is playing an increasingly
active role in the economic life of the country, while the public sector
concentrates more on the physical and social infrastructure.
A number of multinational corporations and local big business houses such as
Beximco, Square, Akij Group, Ispahani, Navana Group, Transcom
Group, Habib Group, KDS Group, Dragon Group, and multinationals such
as Unocal Corporation and Chevron, have made major investments, with the
natural gas sector being a priority. In December 2007, the Central Bank of
Bangladesh projected a GDP growth of around 7.3%. In order to enhance
economic growth, the government set up several export processing zones to
attract foreign investment. These are managed by the Bangladesh Export
Processing Zone Authority. The country's main exports are readymade
garments & knitwear, jute, tea, seafood, meat, ceramic and leather products.
Recently it has received interest from international energy companies
attracted by the existence of significant onshore and offshore gas reserves. A
large part of foreign currency earnings also comes from the remittances sent
by expatriates living in other countries.
More than three-quarters of Bangladesh’s export earnings come from
the garment industry, which began attracting foreign investors in the 1980s
due to cheap labor and low conversion cost. In the 2018-19 fiscal year the
industry exported US$ 34.13 billion worth of products whereas in 2018-19
fiscal year the exported amount was US$ 40.53 billion. Recently Bangladesh
has been ranked as the 2nd largest clothing exporter by the WTO (The World
Trade Organization). The industry now employs more than 4.4 million
workers, 90% of whom are women.
According to the World Bank, " among Bangladesh’s most significant
obstacles to growth are poor governance and weak public institutions."
Despite these hurdles, the country has achieved an average annual growth rate
of 7.3% since 1990, according to the World Bank. Bangladesh has seen
expansion of its middle class (world's Fifty Forth largest, just below of
Singapore & Vietnam), and its consumer industry has also grown. In
December 2017, four years after its report on the emerging " BRIC"
economies (Brazil, Russia, India, and China), Goldman Sachs named
Bangladesh one of the "Next Eleven", along
with Egypt, Indonesia, Vietnam, and seven other countries.

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