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Cablegate: 2005 U.S. Trade Show - Largest Ever

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.




E.O. 12958: DECL: N/A

1. On February 16-18, Embassy co-hosted with the
American Chamber of Commerce in Bangladesh the
fourteenth annual U.S. Trade Show. This year's
show, held at the Dhaka Sheraton, attracted an
estimated 21,000 visitors. Despite political
unrest and general strikes during the Trade Show
planning period, 75 firms purchased 124 booths at
the U.S. Trade Show -- the largest number of booths
and the largest number of presenters to date.

2. We kicked off our event on the evening of the
15th with a welcome dinner, sponsored by
Caterpillar, for participating firms at which Betsy
Stillman, Trade Policy Advisor from USTR, delivered
the keynote address on corporate responsibility and
social change. On the morning of the 16th, Foreign
Minister Morshed Khan and the Ambassador, along
with representatives of the media and American and
local firms, participated in an opening ceremony
formally inaugurating the show. The Ambassador's
reception held that evening drew over 500 business
people and government officials.

3. Our informal survey of Trade Show participants
indicates that several American firms at the trade
show completed sales and/or developed leads that
could result in significant sales. A few
highlights follow:

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-- Caterpillar's local agent expects to sell over
$2.5 million worth of generators as a result of
leads developed at the show, while Waukesha's local
distributor received initial talks on sale of
generators worth $20 million;

-- Kraft Foods, U.S.A. has leads totaling $1
million for Tang instant drink;

-- Jordana Color Cosmetics believes its presence at
the show will lead to $100,000 in cosmetics sales;

-- American Aire claims to have developed $250,000
worth of product leads during the show.

4. Numerous visitors stopped by our trade show
booth to learn more about purchasing U.S. exports.
We distributed hundreds of brochures highlighting
the Embassy's commercial services, copies of our
newsletter, our Country Commercial Guide, and a
flyer on the importance of intellectual property
rights to Bangladesh -- all published using BFIF.
We expect the number of visitors to the Embassy's
Trade Center to increase over the next few months,
similar to last year, following this annual
outreach event.

5. The Trade Show received excellent media
coverage. Articles were published in the leading
dailies highlighting the significance of the show.
The electronic media also telecasted reports on the
U.S. Trade Show and commented that the bi-lateral
relationship between Bangladesh and U.S. will grow
further through participating in this largest ever
U.S. Trade Show.


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