Embassy of Bangladesh in the Netherlands, together with Rijksoverheid, Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO), Wageningen University & Research, Standard Chartered Bank (Bangladesh) Netherlands Food Partnership, Dutch Greenhouse Delta, LightCastle Partners, Larive International, TopSector Agri-Food, is bringing together the leading entrepreneurs from Bangladesh across livestock, dairy, fisheries, aquaculture, horticulture, poultry to the Netherlands at the (in person) Conclave.
This won’t be a conventional seminar. The 40+ leading individuals are coming to listen to perspectives, and insights from Dutch agri-science and agribusiness; and are open to exploring/discussing possible collaboration drawing on Dutch technology and innovation.
The past five decades have seen notable accomplishments in Bangladesh agriculture. Bangladesh now features in the global rankings in production of some of the key cereals or non-cereals and across diverse sub-sectors i.e. horticulture, livestock, fisheries, and poultry.
Beyond manufacturing, transformed agriculture promises to be the next big growth story for Bangladesh – in meeting the fast-rising local demands and also entering global markets. In moving to the next level, several key challenges in Bangladesh’s agro-food sector need to be addressed. With declining farmland-use intensity, shrinking arable land, competing use of freshwater and rapid urbanization, Bangladesh Agri-Food – Water nexus wants to tap Dutch technology – innovation to look deeper. This is also to address the Climate Change challenges e.g. rising sea level and salinity in Bangladesh agriculture.
Bangladesh agriculture aims to focus more on ‘value’ than ‘volume’ to meet the national demands and also to emerge as an agro-food exporter. To realistically tap opportunities, Bangladeshi entrepreneurs are open to exploring cutting-edge knowledge – technology – innovation. In recent times, Dutch private entrepreneurs are showing growing interest to collaborate with credible–responsible–transparent Bangladeshi entrepreneurs/companies by sharing their knowledge and technology.
The Netherlands is around 30% of Bangladesh in land area. There is much similarity between the two deltas. Recognizing the growing potential to convert the endemic challenges into opportunities and bringing the Dutch agro-technology – innovation to Bangladesh, RVO has so far conducted five Market Scans (Seed, Feed, Horticulture, Poultry, Fisheries). Several Dutch business delegations have visited Bangladesh since recognizing growing business worthiness in Bangladesh, on a ‘win-win basis’. These illustrate the potential to form mutually gainful partnerships in Bangladesh with the Dutch entrepreneurs, SMEs, and companies. Implementation of the Bangladesh Delta Plan 2100 promises to open up further opportunities for transformative engagements in Bangladesh agriculture.
This Conclave is to bridge ‘signals’ between credible – responsible private sector from Bangladesh and the Netherlands. In the Conclave (in-person), in Hague, the Dutch entrepreneurs are expected to introduce some of their niche technology – innovations that could be of interest to Bangladeshi peers. In general, Bangladeshi participants are keen to learn Dutch knowledge to augment production, develop key – agile – transparent supply chain, ways to produce safe – quality – chemical-free fruits and vegetables and other animal products, etc.
The Conclave would be held in World Cafe Format, steered by the Wageningen Metropolitan Food Cluster.
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In the break-out sessions, sector-specific Dutch leads would engage with the Bangladeshi business leaders, share some of the Dutch technology solutions-innovation of possible relevance to/in Bangladesh and engage with the Bangladeshi entrepreneurs to respond to their specific business propositions or collaboration in collaboration with potential Dutch business.
On the following day of the Conclave (31 May), some of the Bangladeshi participants would like to visit and interface with leading Dutch tech companies/enterprises of their interest e.g. Boxmeer (animal genetics), Friesland (dairy), Wageningen (agro-innovation or startups), etc.
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