Private inland container depots stop moving export cargo
Private inland container depots (ICDs) stopped transporting export goods through containers of three foreign companies, demanding additional charges — disrupting timely shipment — this morning. Sources said since morning, no export cargo was moved into containers of the three companies at the 18 private container depots, known as “off docks”. The three container shipping companies including Denmark-based leading shipping lines Maersk, Hong Kong-based companies Gold Star Line and Orient Overseas Container Line (OOCL) carry around 60 percent of the country’s export cargoes.
Around 90 percent of country’s export goods, including readymade garment products, are at first brought from across the country to these ICDs for customs procedures and then those goods are loaded on to containers to be taken to the port for shipment. Due to the sudden decision of the ICD owners without any prior announcement, transport of major portion of export cargo to the port remained suspended, said Khairul Alam Sujan, director of Bangladesh Freight Forwarders Association (BAFFA). Many trucks carrying export goods from different parts of the country are stuck in front of ICDs located in and outskirts of the city as they were not allowed by the ICDs, Sujan alleged.
Despite repeated attempts, Bangladesh Inland Container Depots Association President Nurul Qayyum Khan could not be contacted over cellphone for his comment on the issue.