Nepalese poultry sector entrepreneurs have requested Bangladesh government to lift ban on export of soybean de-oiled cake, as their poultry industry has been severely hit following the ban decision, sources said.
The Bangladesh embassy in Nepal has recently forwarded a letter of the Nepal Feed Industries Association (NFIA) to the government for considering the issue.
The leaders of the association informed that Bangladesh's decision to ban export of poultry feed made a severe impact on the Nepalese poultry industry, the embassy letter mentioned.
The Nepalese poultry sector entrepreneurs would prefer importing products from Bangladesh to other countries because of their high quality, the letter added.
The NFIA leaders requested the Bangladesh Embassy to convey their request to the government to permit export of soybean de-oiled cake.
The Ministry of Commerce (MoC) imposed a ban on export of soybean meal in October last, in a bid to control rising prices of the key element of poultry and cattle feed as well as to protect the country's dairy and poultry sectors, said officials.
The decision was taken following requests of the Bangladesh Dairy Farmers' Association (BDFA).
If the government withdraws the existing export ban, prices of dairy and other related food items would see further hike, said entrepreneurs of dairy and poultry sectors.
About 70-75 per cent of the total cost of producing egg, fish and poultry is spent on buying feed, they added.
The total demand for soybean meal in Bangladesh is about 2.5-2.6 million tonnes per year.
Of the total demand, 75-80 per cent is procured from domestic soybean oil producers. The country also imports over 0.35-0.40 million tonnes of soybean meal per year from various countries, including India, the US, Brazil, and Argentina.
Currently, the government is allowing import of soybean seeds with zero-duty facility to help flourish the industry.
The volume of Bangladesh's animal fodder export to Nepal was about US$ 8.33 million, which is about one-third of the country's total export to there, according to the embassy letter.
According to the MoC officials, there is demand for Bangladeshi soybean cake, soymeal and soybean in different countries, including Nepal, Cambodia, India and Thailand.
Annual soybean meal production capacity of the local industrial groups, including Meghna, City, Globe, KBC and Jamuna, is around 5.0 million tonnes.
The industrial groups claimed that their soybean seed crushing factories had been facing huge losses due to the export ban, the officials added.