DHAKA, June 8 (Reuters) - Bangladesh exports earned $2.84 billion in May, rising 4.4 percent from a year earlier, driven by an increase in garment shipments, government data showed on Monday.
Exports had fallen to $2.4 billion in April.
For July to May, the first 11 months of the 2014-15 financial year, exports rose 2.8 percent to $28.14 billion from a year earlier, the Export Promotion Bureau said.
It was still 6 percent short of the target as western buyers held back orders during violent political unrest early this year that left dead more than 120 people, most in petrol bomb attacks on vehicles. Political unrest, however, eased in April.
Readymade garments, comprising knitwear and woven items, fetched $22.9 billion in July-May, compared with $22.1 billion in the same period a year ago.
On Thursday, Bangladesh announced its national budget that targets 7 percent growth, an increase of nearly 1 percent from the average of the last decade, on the back of rising exports and remittances from millions of its citizens working overseas.
The garment industry is an important contributor to the economy, with duty-free access to Western markets having helped to make Bangladesh the world’s largest apparel exporter after China.
But the industry, which supplies many Western brands such as Wal-Mart, Tesco and H&M, has faced pressure after a string of fatal factory accidents, including a 2013 building collapse that killed more than 1,130 people. (Reporting by Ruma Paul; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore and Sunil Nair)