The government is set to form a high-level task force to further tighten the security of Chattogram Port, officials said on Thursday.
The decision was made in a high-level government meeting held in Chattogram on Thursday where Chief Secretary to the Prime Minister Ahmed Kaykaus, Secretary of the Ministry of Shipping Mustafa Kamal, Chairman of the National Board of Revenue Abu Hena Md Rahmatul Muneem, Chairman of Chattogram Port Authority Rear Admiral M Shahjahan, Commissioner of Chattogram Customs House Md Fakhrul Alam and other government officials were present.
Chattogram Port Chief Personnel Officer Mohammad Nasir Uddin told The Business Standard that a decision was taken to form a task force to ensure the overall security of Chattogram port. The meeting discussed issues such as removal of dangerous cargo from the port, speedy auction of auctionable goods, etc.
The meeting highlighted the overall picture of Chattogram port and mentioned that there are 7,511 Twenty-foot Equivalent Units (TEUs) of containers waiting for auction at the port. As a result, Chattogram Port Authority is losing Tk5 lakh TEUs container handling capacity every year, depriving the port of approximately Tk150 crore of foreign exchange earnings annually. If the rent of the auctionable containers is considered, the amount of loss would be more.
Chattogram Port Authority informed the meeting that it owes approximately Tk100 crore from auction shares to the Chattogram Customs. Chattogram port has some 272 containers of dangerous goods. Of these, 47 containers are more than 15 years old and dilapidated.
Chattogram Customs recommends direct delivery to the importer by completing customs clearance before reaching Chattogram while the dangerous goods are on board.