Indian exporters dump sugar: BSFIC official
India is allegedly providing a considerable amount of subsidy for sugar export to Bangladesh as part of its strategy to dump the essential item.
Chief Marketing Executive of Bangladesh Sugar and Food Industries Corporation (BSFIC) ATM Alamgir made the allegation saying that both the central and provincial governments in India are giving huge subsidies to sugar exporters.
“The central government (of India) provides US$ 35 against per tonne sugar export to Bangladesh, while provincial governments, particularly that of Maharastra, gives US$ 30 in this regard,” the BSFIC senior official told a meeting here yesterday.
The Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) organised the meeting to discuss Bangladesh's trade mechanisms to deal with the anti-dumping and counter-veiling measures.
The BSFIC official apprehended that sugar mills both in public and private sectors might face closure, if such Indian sugar dumping continues.
Dr Guster Brink, team leader of Trade Defence Mechanism in Bangladesh, who made a presentation on the issue, said local entrepreneurs should lodge a complaint with WTO with proper data and information to prove the allegation to have a remedial measure.
FBCCI Secretary Syed Jamaluddin said the Bangladesh Tariff Commission (BTC) is the appropriate authority to do the job. “But unfortunately, the BTC is trying to avoid its responsibility,” he observed.
Professor of Economics at the Dhaka University AK Monwar Uddin Ahmed said, “Not only sugar, India and China are dumping many more products in Bangladesh. But Bangladeshi entrepreneurs cannot take advantage of anti-dumping and counter-veiling measures because of their poor database and information system.”
Dhaka chamber's representative Ferdous Ara said local entrepreneurs do not want to make disclosure about their losses caused by the dumping to avoid the risk of high tax payment.
“Corporate tax in Bangladesh is the highest in the world, even higher than that of Europe…So, most of the industry owners do not want to disclose information to avoid the risk of high tax payment,” she said.
The Bangladesh Tariff Commission was supposed to be a partner to organise the discussion meeting, but no one of its officials was present to hear or record the proceedings.
FBCCI Acting President Kamran T Rahman, who presided over the meeting, said the BTC officials were busy otherwise. “That's why they couldn't attend the meeting.”