Steel mills owners want duty-free export of MS products to India
Reported by: Unbconnect
Reported on: Oct 24, 2011 02:33 pm
Reported in: National
Dhaka, Oct 24 (UNB) - Leaders of three associations of steel and re-rolling mills on Monday urged the government to step back from allowing India to use Ashuganj port as long as it cannot ensure easy and duty-free export of MS Rods and other steel products from Bangladesh to India.
The demand came from a joint press conference of Bangladesh Auto Re-rolling and Steel Mills Association, Bangladesh Steel Mill Owners Association and Bangladesh Re-rolling Mills Association held at Dhaka Reporters Unity (DRU) in the city.
Addressing the press conference, Bangladesh Auto Re-rolling and Steel Mills Association secretary general Abul Kashem Majumder expressed concern over the possible entry of re-rolling and steel products into Bangladesh market without paying any duty.
This will pose a big threat to the local industry already hard-hit by electricity and gas crisis, he said.
“We met Commerce Minister Faruk Khan and requested him for taking steps to simplify the process of exporting MS Rod and other steel products to India. He assured us of taking necessary steps,” Majumder said.
He, however, lamented that there is no decision yet on the issue even after the Indian Prime Minister’s recent visit to Dhaka.
Reading out from a written statement, Majumder said the price of raw materials has increased significantly. As a result, only around 100 of the 300 re-rolling mills in the country remained operational while the others had to close down.
He informed that the total investment in the steel and re-rolling industry in the country is now around Tk 20,000 crore. The annual production now averaged 40 lakh metric tons against the capacity of 80 lakh tons while trhe domestic annual demand is 30 lakh tons.
Bangladesh Steel Mill Owners Association secretary general M Shahjahan and Bangladesh Re-rolling Mills Association general secretary Abu Bakar Siddiqui were, among others, present.