Chittagong, 18 May, 2010: Shipbuilders today (Tuesday) urged the government to provide 15 per cent cash incentive on vessel export, cut in bank interest rate and simplifying of visa procedures for foreign buyers in order to give the sector a boost.
“To promote this emerging industry at such primary level, the government should provide at least 15 per cent cash incentive on export to offset various constraints in the sector,” said Mr. Sakhawat Hossain, Managing Director of Western Marine Shipyards Limited at a seminar on ‘Present Condition & Export Opportunities of Shipbuilding in Bangladesh,’ organized by the Bangladesh Export Promotion Bureau in the port city.
Mr. Sakhawat who delivered the keynote paper at the seminar also urged the government to slash the interest rate on bank loan to 6 – 7 per cent from present 13 to 14 per cent to become competitive with other shipbuilding nations such as India, Korea, China & Vietnam which receive bank finance for shipbuilding projects at 6 to 7 per cent interest rate.
He also suggested the government to organize shipbuilding exhibition in Bangladesh to introduce the competent, cost effective and competitive shipbuilding industry of Bangladesh as well as to support the local shipyards in participating international exhibition abroad to secure foreign shipbuilding orders.
Senior Vice-president of Chittagong Chamber of Commerce & Industry (CCCI) Mr. M A Salam and Md. Rabiul Islam, Director of Board of Investment, Chittagong were present at the seminar, held at the EPB conference room as the chief guest and special guest respectively.
The seminar was presided over by the director of EPB, Chittagong Md. Golam Mustofa Speaking at the seminar, MA Salam sought more cooperation from different government bodies, including Chittagong Development Authority and Department of Environment for flourishing the shipbuilding sector. Md. Golam Mustofa said the government had declared shipbuilding sector as thrust sector in Export Policy 2009-2012 which would usher a new horizon in country’s national economy.
Representatives of most of commercial Banks and government bodies were also present in the seminar.