Long waiting period of trucks at Bangla land border cause for concern, say exporters

  • | Wednesday | 20th October, 2021

Kolkata, Oct 20 (PTI) Exporters on Wednesday expressed discontent over long waiting periods of trucks carrying consignments to Bangladesh, at Petrapole and Ghojadanga land borders, apprehending disruption of shipments to the neighbouring country. The trucks with export cargo are being detained for over a month and in some cases, it has reached 55 days, they said. “There are several reasons. Export volume from both countries has increased and Puja holidays have compounded the problem,” Federation of Indian Exporters chairman (east) Sushil Patwari told PTI. Petrapole in North 24 Parganas district of West Bengal is the largest land trade border with Bangladesh with a total trade of over Rs 20,000 crore. Ghojadanga is also in the same district. Petrapole-Benapole(Bangladesh) is an important land border crossing for the two neighbouring countries both in terms of trade and passenger movement. “Earlier the detention period before crossing the border was about 15 days, now it is over a month,“ Patwari said. Currently, around 250 trucks with export cargo cross the border but this number can increase if customs officials make a little extra effort, he said. “The detention period for exports has reached 55 days at Gojadanga,” a rice exporter said. Benapole CF Agents secretary Sajidur Rehman said detention problems had surged at Petrapole and India is also not accepting more Bangladeshi trucks with export cargo leading to thousands of trucks lined up on both sides of the border. However, exporters of both countries said there were no disruptions in trade following recent reports of attacks on the minority Hindu community in several districts of Bangladesh. Exports from Bangladesh have also jumped and the average number of trucks crossing Petrapole with Bangladeshi goods is 200-250 against 150 trucks earlier. PTI BSM MM MM

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