Businesses prefer Mongla Port to Chattogram Port for importing vehicles because of greater port facilities, shorter time to get imports released from customs, and high-quality sheds and yards to keep vehicles.
And the recently inaugurated Padma Bridge has given Mongla Port a shot in its arm as importers now can bring imported cars from the port to Dhaka faster than in previous times.
According to official sources, the number of vehicles imported through Mongla Port in the fiscal 2021-22 stood at 20,808, which was 13,913 in the case of Chattogram Port.
Mongla Port Authorities started vehicle import activities in FY10, port sources said, adding that year 8,909 vehicles were imported through the port.
Ahsan Arju, chairman of the Standing Committee on the Port Affairs at the Bangladesh Reconditioned Vehicle Importer and Dealers Association, told The Business Standard that 300 members of their association import vehicles through Mongla Port.
He mentioned that comparatively faster release of imported vehicles and adequate space to keep those at the port are two of the main reasons for their preference for this port.
"Besides, the vehicles are now reaching Dhaka in half the previous time because of the Padma Bridge," he added.
Mongla Customs House Commissioner Neazur Rahman said they earn 52% of the total revenue from imported vehicles.
The revenue target for FY22 was Tk4,930 crore. With the revenue hitting Tk4,580 crore in the first 11 months of the fiscal, the port authorities are expecting that their earnings will exceed the target set for the year.
Mongla Port Chairman Rear Admiral Mohammad Musa said the capacity of the port has increased manifold and there are eight ongoing projects in this regard, which will further enhance its capacity.
He added that the distance between Dhaka and Mongla Port through the Padma Bridge is 170 kilometres, while it is 260 km from Chattogram Port and 270 km from Payra Port.
He expressed hope that importers and exporters of other export goods also will now prefer Mongla Port for these reasons.