The Financial Express

Benapole port users halt import trade with India

| Updated: July 03, 2020 12:26:23

File photo (collected) File photo (collected)

Port users' have suspended imported Indian goods through Benapole port from Wednesday morning to protest of India refused to accept Bangladeshi exports goods.

As a result, hundreds of trucks loaded with goods waiting to enter Benapole Port are stranded at the Indian port of Petrapole. Port users including C&F Agent Staff association declared to suspend import trade if Bangladeshi exports are not accepted by India.

500 trucks carrying export goods had been stuck at Benapole for the last three months. Then import trade resumed on June 7 through the Benapole port, but export trade remained closed. Although the Indian government and its traders have allowed Indian goods to enter Bangladesh, they have not allowed Bangladeshi export goods to enter India. Trucks carrying export goods, including, garments and jute goods, are remaining parked in the area.

Alhaj Mofizur Rahman Sajon, president of the Benapole C&F Agents Association, said they were not accepting Bangladeshi export goods. For that reason the exporter traders have announced to stop the import trade from India. No imported goods had entered Bangladesh from India since 9:30 am on Wednesday. The exporters have to count a hefty amount of truck demurrage as Bangladeshi export goods cannot enter India.

Shamimur Rahman, assistant revenue officer at Benapole Customs' cargo branch, said Bangladeshi traders had announced to suspend import trade as exports were not accepted by India. So the import trade has remained closed since 9:30 am on Wednesday.

Kartik Chakraborty, general secretary of the C&F Agents Welfare Staff Association in the Indian port of Petrapole, said Bangladeshi exports were not being taken because of the coronavirus. If Bangladeshi traders think that they will not take imported goods because of this virus, then that is their business. "We are not able to take export products from Bangladesh due to our restrictions," he added.

Benapole Port Director Mamun Kabir Tarafdar said various organisations using Benapole ports had stopped importing Indian goods since the morning. As a result, 500 trucks carrying export goods are stuck in the Benapole port area waiting to enter India.

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