The Financial Express

Govt retakes eight mills as private operators fail

Failure to create jobs, long closure, mills’ conversion construed as breach of deals

| Updated: October 24, 2017 08:35:18

Govt retakes eight mills as private operators fail

The government has taken back eight jute and textiles mills from their private entrepreneurs as the latter breached the major terms and conditions of privatisation, officials said.

Failure to create jobs, keeping mills closed for long time, converting some of the divested mills into different production units and even selloff of land are construed as a gross breach of the deals.

In 2017, a total of six mills were taken back with the latest reacquisition of Fouzi Jute Mills at Ghorasal in Narsingdi and Madaripur Textile Mill in mid-July.

The rest of the renationalised mills are Kokil Textile Mills Limited in Brahmanbaria, A R Hawlader Jute Mills Limited in Madaripur, Eagle Star Textile Mills Limited in Chittagong, Jalil Textile Mills Limited in Fouzdarhat, Chittagong, Dhaka Jute Mills Limited and Gausia Jute Mills Limited in Dhaka.

The last two were taken back in 2015, according to the officials.

One of the main objectives of handover of the mills to private sector is to create employment, which has not been met for long closure of the mills, a ministry official said.

Besides, the mills' authorities did not clear the dues to Bangladesh Jute Mills Corporation (BJMC), Bangladesh Textile Mills Corporation (BTMC) and other financial institutions as per the agreements signed with them, he explained.

The government, in October 2014, had decided to take over the mills from the companies which violated terms and conditions of privatisation.

"We are now executing the decision," he said, as the reversal of failed privatisation proceeded.

Another ministry official said the government was taking back the mills which had remained closed for years.

"The government has plans to reopen the mills under public sector, and after taking back the errant mills, we will take necessary measures as to how to reopen the mills," he added.

Some of the mills had remained closed for many years while owners of some others converted those into other production units, which they were not authorised to do.

Even, he went on explaining the reasons for government action, a few of them transferred the ownership to others.

As per directive from the Prime Minister, the textiles and jute ministry took initiative to bring back 69 privatised mills that had violated conditions, according to the officials.

Ministry officials have already visited 47 of the mills and prepared report on their latest status.

Since 1982, the government had privatised 134 jute and textiles mills and most of the buyers violated terms and conditions of the privatisation, they added.


Share if you like