The production of sodium silicate, the main raw material for making soap, is being continued at Bangladesh Small and Cottage Industries Corporation (BSCIC) industrial estate in Sirajganj amid the novel coronavirus outbreak.
The BSCIC took the initiative to produce and supply soaps as it is an essential material for the protection against the novel coronavirus.
According to the BSCIC sources, there are around 10-11 companies which produce sodium silicate throughout the country. Out of these, the only BSCIC industrial estate in the North Bengal that produces sodium silicate is Ms Zaibunnisa Chemicals Ltd, located in Sirajganj.
The company has been supplying sodium silicate in Bogura, Rangpur, Dinajpur, Saidpur, Thakurgaon, Nilphamari, etc while keeping their factory running.
Sree Joy Prakash, industrial officer at Sirajganj BSCIC industrial area said that MS Zaibunnisa Chemicals Ltd has produced 500 metric tonne sodium silicate worth Tk80 lakh from March 18 to date.
"The factory has been operating on a limited scale due to lack of workers. Despite that, Zaibunnisa Chemicals has been producing 15 metric tonne sodium silicate daily," said Liton Chandra Ghosh, acting assistant general manager of the BSCIC's industrial support centre, Sirajganj.
He further added that at present 36 employees are working at the factory while maintaining all the precautions.
Md Azim Siddiqui, manager of Ms Zaibunnisa Chemicals Ltd said that the factory was shut down on April 2 due to the outbreak of coronavirus, however, with the full cooperation of industry officials and BSCIC authorities it was reopened on April 16.