Industry Desk:Country’s apparel manufacturers have asked the government to allow the partial shipment in all the land ports of the country in importing raw materials for the sector.
They have also demanded to relax the conditions of importing yarn, cotton, fabrics and other raw materials through the recognized land ports.
Faruque Hassan, president of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) sent a letter to the Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi recently.
In the letter, Faruque Hassan said that the country imports a significant amount of yarn every year which is being imported through Benapole land port.
“But there are restrictions on import of cotton, yarn, cloth and other raw materials of the apparel sector through the land port. That is why the apparel industries cannot ensure the proper use of lead time,” he added.
Moreover, the import of raw materials is only allowed through the Benapole port under bonded warehouse facility and partial shipment is also not allowed, which often leads to hampering export and import, he added.
The BGMEA demanded the government to allow partial shipment facilities through the all-recognized land ports, including the Benapole and to allow the import of yarn, cotton fabrics and other raw materials particularly through the Bhomra and Sunamasjid land ports under bonded warehouse facilities.
Meanwhile, the opportunity of partial import of raw materials is now allowed only through the Chittagong seaport.
Industry insiders said that they prefer partial shipments mainly for timely use of raw materials (See Page-7)
and to reduce the cost of storage and warehousing of imported goods, and also to ensure the proper use of lead time.
The BGMEA president also demanded to ease the rules for importing yarn, cotton and other raw materials from India by eliminating different non-tariff barriers.
BGMEA also said that buyers always evaluate the overall capacity of the sourcing country in the international sourcing trade.
“We have alternative ports, but being confined to only one port and not being allowed partial shipment is not a positive sign to the buyers,” said the BGMEA president.
“Moreover, if the maximum utilization of land ports is possible, Bangladesh will be capable of achieving efficiency and increase the supply of raw materials, which will motivate buyers to place more orders,” he added.
The BGMEA also wanted the infrastructure of the surroundings of all land ports to improve and appoint required manpower to avoid transport congestion.
“The number of imports and exports will surely increase. We want no turmoil in the ports due to the lack of infrastructure and manpower,” said Faruque Hassan.
The letter also said that the country’s export-oriented RMG sector has been facing unprecedented challenges in terms of price and supply of yarn over the last year.
There is a sufficient supply of cotton in the world market but the price of yarn has been rising significantly in the local and international markets at present. As a result, the garment industry is not able to retain its potential.
At the same time, the freight transportation system has also been disrupted internationally which led to a surge in transportation costs to major export destinations (the US and Europe) by about 100%-300% in the last two years.
Moreover, the production cost in the garment industry has also increased by about 30% in the last eight years due to an increase in wages, electricity, gas, bank charges, freight charges and other reasons, the letter read.
The letter also highlighted the positive impact that the necessary policy reforms and implementation will bring for the apparel industry.
“The implementation of these recommendations will reduce the pressure on the Benapole land port and this will speed up the imports and exports which will save time and money,” Faruque Hassan said in the letter.
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