The country’s knitwear exporters on Thursday alleged that they were facing losses as a section of importers created an artificial crisis of chemical compounds and raised the prices of the items using the coronavirus outbreak in China as a pretext.
A number of chemical compounds including dyes and salt are used in the knitwear industries.
The exporters made the allegation in a meeting on the impact of coronavirus on trade and business, held at the commerce ministry conference room in the capital.
They also expressed their fear that there would be more than one month delay in getting supply of raw materials from China as Chinese exporting companies were yet to start their operations after the Chinese New Year due to the epidemic.
Commerce secretary Md Jafar Uddin presided over the meeting while Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association first vice-president Mohammad Hatem, commerce ministry additional secretary Md Obaidul Azam and representatives from the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association and Bangladesh Trade and Tariff Commission attended the meeting.
‘We have sought intervention of the government in the market as some of the importers have created an artificial crisis of chemical compounds including dyeing chemicals on the market,’ Hatem told New Age following the meeting.
He said that the prices of most of the chemical compounds used in the knitwear industry were raised abnormally showing the coronavirus outbreak in China as a pretext but the chemical stocks were imported before the outbreak.
Hatem said that a very few companies in China started their operations in the last couple of days and it would take time to start shipment of industrial raw materials in full swing.
‘After a long break, a few Chinese companies have started shipment on a small scale and we have requested the commerce ministry to take necessary steps to release the delayed consignment on priority basis in port,’ Hatem said.
Sources said that the traders of essential commodities in the meeting assured the ministry that the supply shortage of garlic and ginger would not take place on the market due to the virus outbreak in China as the harvesting of the items started in Bangladesh and India.
Jafar Uddin said that the government’s monitoring teams would visit the commodity market on a regular basis and would take legal action against any manipulation.
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