Bangladesh Shipping Agents Association has sent a letter to the Chittagong Port Authority and Chittagong Customs Commissioner requesting arrangements for starting operational activities of the damaged BM container depot and a decision on the containers damaged in the fire and explosion at Sitakunda.
In the letter issued by the Association Chairman Syed Mohammad Arif on Sunday said, "It is urgently necessary to take a decision considering foreign trade of the country and supply of raw materials/imported cargo of industries and consumable goods upon compliance of all legal steps– export of intact containers with export cargo and delivery of raw materials/imported cargo and consumable items of import containers to the importers, use of empty containers for import/export trade and delivery of raw materials/imported cargo of industries and consumable goods to the importers and use of empty containers for import/export trade".
The letter also said that MLO Agents will have to settle disputes with their respective foreign principals and other related parties on damaged containers based on the decision of the concerned.
The association made three-point demands including––export of intact containers with export cargo and delivery of raw materials/imported cargo and consumable items of import containers to the importers; use of empty containers for import/export trade and appraisement to MLO (Main Line Operator) agents upon fixation of loss by the concerned authorities of completely/partly damaged containers".
Earlier on Thursday, Chattogram Customs House Commissioner Mohammad Fakhrul Alam told The Business Standard that there is no impediment to releasing import-export goods stuck in the depot due to the accident. "Many are already contacting us to get their products released."
But the shipping agents alleged that although the authorities concerned are saying there is no barrier in releasing the cargos, in reality, it is not happening and further loss is being incurred.