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Might fail to procure targeted quantity of : CorporatiTrading on of Bangladesh

Staff Correspondent : CorporatiTrading on of Bangladesh might fail to procure targeted quantity of sugar and edible oil for distribution among the dealers to keep the prices of essential commodities stable in the month of Ramadan.

Sources in the state trading agency indicated that lengthy process for importing the essentials might lead to delay in shipment which could fail to reach the country ahead of the holy month of Ramadan.

Last year, TCB had to receive the imported commodities after Ramadan due to delay in the tender process, defeating the purpose of controlling the prices of the essentials during the holy month when their demands are high.

The officials, who wanted not to be quoted, claimed that although TCB was prompt enough to finish the selection of importers after calling the tenders, red-tape at the ministry caused the delay in shipment.

TCB is expected to import 30,000 tonnes of sugar, 30,000 tonnes of soya bean oil, 1,000 tonnes of chick pea and 1,000 tonnes of dates (khejur) to supply in the market during the Ramadan. It had a stock of 25,000 tonnes of red lentil that was procured last year.

Sources said that among the items, 1,000 tonnes of chick pea and 1,000 tonnes of dates (khejur) had already been imported.

He warned that most of the 11 importers who had been selected through tender might not be able to import sugar because of delay in the import process.

Some TCB officials claimed that the big businesses in sugar and oil were desperate to create obstructions so that the state trading agency could not import the commodities.

The traders have meanwhile increased the price of sugar by Tk 15 per kilogram and that of soya bean oil by around Tk 10 per litre over the month. Sugar was retailed at Tk 72 and soya bean oil for Tk 118 per litre in retail markets in the capital.

Amid the fear of failure to supply adequate commodities to keep the market stable during Ramadan, TCB is going to start distribution of its old stock of sugar, soya bean oil, chick pea, khejur and red lentil among its 2,450 distributors across the country from today.

The distribution will be made in two phases, 19 July and 7 August. In each phase, a dealer will get a maximum two tonnes of sugar, one tonne of red lentil, 1,200 litres of soya bean oil, 500 kilogram of khejur and 500 kilogram of chick pea.

TCB chief officer of sales and distribution Rafiqul Islam claimed that TCB has the enough stock of the commodities to

distribute among their dealers at the fixed quantity in the first phase, but there could be shortage of the commodities for distribution in the second phase.

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