‘Too many approvals for customs clearance a barrier to trade’
Approvals from some 39 government agencies are required for customs clearance of any product at Chattogram port, which is a major barrier to trade, according to the Bangladesh Business Climate Index (BBX).
And the port faces severe congestion often for the delay in goods release and the cost of doing business increases eventually, according to the index virtually launched for the first time in the country today.
Policy Exchange, Bangladesh (PEB) and the Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) jointly launched the index to measure the business environment in Bangladesh.
The report said the small business units, particularly the goods related business suffers the most across the country as they need to obtain certification from different government agencies but they have not so much knowledge and financial capability.
The regulatory complexities, scarcity of land poor infrastructures, land mutation, poor road connectivity are found as major trade barriers in the country although Bangladesh progressed and economical development are laudable.
Bangladesh's economic development is wonderful, which grew even during the Covid-19 pandemic, Ito Naoki, Japanese ambassador in Bangladesh, said at the launch of the index.
Next year, the Japanese Special Economic Zone will go into operation, which is a significant development for the country, he said.
Syed Nasim Manzur, managing director of Apex Footwear Ltd and a former president of MCCI, stressed the need for making business rules easier for everybody by easing regulations and institutions.
Rupali Chowdhury, president of Foreign Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and Rizwan Rahman, president of Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry, also spoke at the event.