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Europe crisis hits Bangladesh exports

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Dhaka, May 15 (bdnews24.com/Reuters) - Bangladesh's exports in April fell 7.13 percent from a year earlier to $1.89 billion, the Export Promotion Bureau said, more evidence that the euro zone debt crisis is affecting the country's economy.

April was the second straight month of declining exports. In March, exports fell 7.23 percent to $1.98 billion.

Due to reduced orders from Europe, business leaders said Bangladesh is unlikely to achieve its target for exports of $26.5 billion in the fiscal that ends June 30. That target is 15 percent higher than the record $23 billion in exports in the last fiscal year.

Total exports for July-April, the first 10 months of the financial year, were up 8.4 percent from a year earlier, to nearly $19.8 billion.

In July-April, earnings from key readymade garments rose 9.6 percent from a year earlier to $15.5 billion.

In recent years, Bangladesh's economy and exports have been boosted by a dramatic shift in garment orders from China to lower-cost Bangladesh.

Garment export is one of country's key drivers, along with remittances from Bangladeshis working overseas.

Europe and the United States are Bangladesh's main export destinations, accounting for losses to 70 percent of its overseas sales of garments.

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