Bangladesh has sought India's support in supplying essential commodities, specially onion from India ahead of the holy month of Ramadan in an effort to keep prices of the essentials stable. "We discussed the import of perishable items from India. We have discussed in detail so that we get 50 thousand tons of onion and 1 lakh tons of sugar before Ramadan," Foreign Minister Hasan Mahmud told reporters after his meeting with India’s Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal on Friday. Libyan PM greets PM Hasina on her re-election The foreign minister mentioned that the new government under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina begins a fresh journey with new mandates, and one of the priorities of the government is to address the prices of essential commodities. Hasan requested Goyal to take necessary measures in ensuring uninterrupted supply of the essential commodities to Bangladesh till Ramadan. Goyal said India is committed to ensuring the economic and financial stability in Bangladesh. Women should be proud of PM Hasina for her capability, leadership: India's President He assured of accommodating the request of Bangladesh foreign minister for supplying essential commodities. The Indian minister stressed on further improving the trade and commerce relation between the two countries. Hasan requested Goyal to remove tariff and non-tariff barriers on export products of Bangladesh and to ensure uninterrupted supply of essential commodities to Bangladesh especially during the month of Ramadan to maintain price stability. Ajit Doval's Dhaka visit part of high level exchange between 2 countries: MEA He is expected to attend a civic reception in Kolkata at the Bangladesh Deputy High Commission to becparticipated by a large number of diplomats, said a senior official accompanying the minister. Members of think-tank and media based in Kolkata will also attend. The foreign minister will return to Dhaka Friday night.
The government has reduced VAT and duty on import of rice, edible oil, sugar, and dates ahead of holy month of Ramadan. The National Board of Revenue (NBR) issued four gazette notifications reducing the customs duties on these essential items from a minimum of 5 percent to a maximum of 47 percent. According to the notifications, rice import duty and tax have been reduced by 47.25 percent. The duty has been reduced from 62.50 percent to 15.25 percent. Out of this, supplementary duty has been cut by 20 percent. Bangladesh seeks IFAD support to boost wheat and edible oil production This tax reduction will be applicablein the import of boiled and non-boiled rice. However, prior to importing rice at subsidized rates, written approval must be taken from an official of minimum joint secretary rank of the Ministry of Food for each shipment. The tax reduction facility will be valid till May 15, 2024. On the other hand, the Value Added Tax on refined and crude (non-refined) soybean and palm oil has been reduced to 10 percent from 15 percent, which will be in force till April 15. Govt to import 12,500 MT of sugar from US For sugar import, the fixed duty has been reduced from Tk 1,500 to Tk 1,000 per metric ton. This facility will be valid till March 31 as per NBR notification. Besides, the import duty on date has been reduced from 58 percent to 43 percent.. It will remain in force till March 30. One crore TCB card holder families to get 5 kg rice at Tk 30 from July In the cabinet meeting held at the Prime Minister's office on January 29, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina ordered reduction of duty on edible oil, sugar, dates, and rice on the occasion of Ramadan. On January 22, the Ministry of Commerce wrote to National Board of Revenue (NBR) to exempt tax on rice, edible oil, sugar, and dates.
The government of Bangladesh will import 12,500 metric tons (MT) of sugar and 220,000 MT of fertliser to meet the domestic requirements. Cabinet Committee on Government Purchase (CCGP) in a meeting on Wednesday (May 17, 2023) approved a number of proposals in this regard. Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal presided over the meeting held virtually. According to a proposal of the Commerce Ministry, its subordinate body Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) will import the sugar from Accentuate Technology Inc., USA (Local Agent: OMC Ltd., Dhaka) through an international open tender system at total cost of Tk 66.27 crore with per kilogram (kg) cost at Tk 82.85. Also Read: PM Hasina: Bangladesh won't buy anything from those who impose sanctions against it Additional secretary to the Cabinet Division Sayeed Mahbub Khan, who briefed reporters about the Cabinet body meeting, said while approving the proposal the issue of the Prime Minister’s instruction not to import any goods from any country which imposed sanction on Bangladesh was not discussed in the meeting. The committee approved two separate proposals of the Industries Ministry to import a total of 60,000 MT of urea fertilizer and 10,000 MT of phosphoric acid by its subordinate body Bangladesh Chemical Industries Corporation (BCIC). Also Read: Tariff Commission recommends fixing loose sugar price at Tk 120, packaged Tk 125 per kg Of these, 30,000 MT of bagged granular urea will be procured from Karnaphuli Fertilizer Company Limited (Kafco) at cost of Tk 120.03 crore with per MT price at $371.25 while another 30,000 MT bulk granular urea fertiliser will be imported from SABIC Agri-nutrients Company of Saudi Arabia at a cost of Tk 106.25 crore with per MT price at $327.33. The BCI will import 10,000 MT of phosphoric acid at Tk 60.95 crore from Sun International FZE, UAE (Local Agent: M/s Agro Industrial Input, Dhaka) for TSP Complex Limited, Chittagong. Each MT of acid will cost $566.50. Also Read: Letter to be sent to NBR to extend duty exemption on sugar import: Commerce Secretary The CCGP approved a total of six proposals of Bangladesh Agriculture Development Corporation (BADC), placed by the Agriculture Ministry, for importing a total of 160,000 MT of different types of fertilizers. Of these, the BADC will import 40,000 MT of DAP fertilizer from MA'ADEN, Saudi Arabia at a cost Tk 229.33 crore, $532 under the state level contract. Also Read: Raid if sugar is not sold at govt-fixed rate: Tipu Munshi It will import 30,000 MT of TSP fertiliser from OCP, S.A. of Morocco at a cost Tk 126.57 crore, with each MT price at $391.50, under the state level contract while 40,000 MT of DAP fertilizer will be imported from the same company of Morocco at a cost of Tk 233.42 crore with per MT price at $541.5. The BADC will import 50,000 MT of Muriate of Potash (MOP) fertiliser from the Canadian Commercial Corporation under the state-level contract at a cost of Tk 225.23crore, with per MT price at $418. Also Read: Japan wants to invest in sugar industry, biomass power, prepaid gas meters in Bangladesh The CCGP approved a proposal of the Local Government Division to extend the cost of the consultant by Tk 11.1 crore for its project "Water Supply and Sanitation in 23 Municipalities of Bangladesh (1st Revised)" being implemented by the Department of Public Health Engineering. Joint Venture of (1) Ranhill, (2) Farhat and (3) DDC had been appointed as consultant for the project. Also Read: Sugar disappears from Dhaka stores amid high price
Bangladesh Army-run Bangladesh Machine Tools Factory Limited (BMTF) will supply 3 crore blank smart cards to Bangladesh Election Commission (EC). Cabinet Committee on Government Purchase (CCGP) in a meeting on Tuesday approved the proposal along with some others from different ministries. Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal presided over the virtual meeting. As per the proposal, the BMTF will supply the smart cards under the Identification System for Enhancing Access to Services (2nd Phase) project of the Arms Forces Division of the Prime Minister's Office at contract value of Tk 406.50 crore. Under other proposals, approved by the CCGP, state marketing agency Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) will import 12,500 metric tons (MT) of sugar and 1.10 crore litres of soybean oil for its ongoing programme to sell those in open market. Each kg of sugar will cost Tk 82.92 while the soybean oil will cost Tk 146.10 per litre Of these, Smart Matrix Pte., Ltd., Singapore (Local Agent: Mark Line Enterprise, Dhaka) will supply 12,500 MT of sugar at Tk 66.79 crore while the Guven Traders Ptv. Ltd., India (Local Agent: HH Enterprise, Dhaka) will supply 1.10 crore of soybean oil at Tk 148.30 crore. Supplier Smart Matrix Pte., Ltd., Singapore was selected for sugar supply through an international bidding process while the Guven Traders Ptv. Ltd., India, was chosen by the TCB through direct procurement method without any bidding process. The Cabinet body approved a number of proposals of the Roads and Highway Department (RHD) under the Roads Transport and Highway Division to award contracts for road constructions. Of these, the Joint Venture of (1) SRBG, China; and (2) and BTC, Bangladesh won a contract of the Lot No- DS-7 under Package No- WP-04 of the Project "Sasec Dhaka-Sylhet Corridor Road Development" at Tk 947.74 crore. The Joint Venture of (1) CSCEC7, China; and (2) Spectra Engineers Ltd., Bangladesh won the contract of the Lot No. DS-8 under Package No- WP-04 of the project “Sasec Dhaka-Sylhet Corridor Road Development” at Tk.1, 178.68 crore. The RHD selected Taher Brothers Ltd. to award the contract for “Upgradation of Gouripur-Anandganj-Madhupur-Dewanganj Bazar-Hosenpur District Highway to the proper standard” at a value of Tk 131. 47 crore. The RHD selected Joint Venture of (1) Mozahar Enterprise Pvt. Ltd., (2) National Development Engineers Ltd., and (3) Sagar Info Builders Ltd. for Package No. PW-01 of "Sherpur (Kanasakhola)-Bhimganj-Narayankhola-Rambhadrapur-Mymensingh (Rahmatpur) Road Development '' Project at Tk 149.99 crore. The Joint Venture of (1) National Development Engineers Ltd. , and (2) Hasan Techno Builders Ltd., has been selected by the RHD for the package No. PW-02 of the "Sherpur (Kanasakhola)-Bhimganj-Narayankhola-Rambhadrapur-Mymensingh (Rahmatpur) Road Development" at a contract value of Tk 180 crore. Meanwhile, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs at a meeting approved in principle a proposal of the Directorate General of Health Services to procure Firstline TB Drugs, Medical and Surgical Supplies and Laboratory Equipment from the Essential Drugs Company Limited through Direct Purchase Method (DPM) without bidding process. The drugs, services and equipment will be procured for the "Health and Gender Support in Cox's Bazar District (2nd Revised)"project under the United Nations Office for Project Services.
Cabinet Committee on Government Purchase (CCGP) approved a total of 14 proposals in its meeting on Wednesday under which the government will import 135,000 metric tons (MT) of fertliser, 4 LNG (liquefied natural gas) cargoes and 12,500 MT of sugar to meet the growing demands. Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal presided over the meeting held virtually. Additional secretary of the Cabinet Division, Sayeed Mahbub Khan briefed reporters about the meeting’s outcomes. According to proposals placed by the Ministry of Industries, its subordinate body Bangladesh Chemical Industries Corporation (BCIC) will import 90,000 MT of urea fertilisers from different companies under state-level agreements. Of these, some 30,000 MT of bagged granular urea fertiliser will be imported from Muntajat of Qatar at a cost of Tk 95.32 crore ($295.33 per MT), 30,000 MT of bagged granular urea from Karnaphuli Fertiliser Company (Kafco) at Tk 105.14 crore ($325.75 per MT), and 30,000 MT of granular urea from Sabic of Saudi Arabia at Tk 105.02 crore ($325.33 per MT). Read more: Cabinet approves amendment to let govt decide energy price without BERC The BCIC will also import 30,000 MT of phosphoric acid at a cost Tk 184.64 crore from Sun International FZU, UAE (local agent: M/S Agro Industrial Input, Dhaka) through international open tender. The Agriculture Ministry placed four proposals under which its subordinate body Bangladesh Agriculture Development Corporation (BADC) will import a total of 145,000 MT of different types of fertilizers from state-owned companies of different countries under state level agreements. Of these, 40,000 MT of DAP fertilizer will be imported from MA’ADEN, Saudi Arabia at Tk 238.59 crore ($554.25 per MT), 50,000 MOP fertilizer from Canadian Commercial Corporation at Tk 226.16 crore ($420.31 per MT), 25,000 MT of TSP fertiliser from CGT of Tunisia at Tk 105.73 crore ($393 per MT) and 30,000 TSP from OCP, SA of Morocco Tk 132.67 crore ($411 per MT). As per proposals placed by the Energy and Mineral Resources Division, its subordinate body Petrobangla will import two LNG Cargo, each having 33.60 lakhs of MMBtu of LNG, from Vitol Asia Pte Ltd.,of Singapore, one at Tk 465.17 crore ($10.978 per MMBtu), and another at Tk 503.73 crore ($11.88 per MMBtu),. A similar capacity cargo containing LNG will be imported from Gunvor Singapore Pte Ltd., Singapore, at Tk 528.35 crore ($12.47 per MMBtu), and another cargo from Excelerate Energy LP, US at Tk 516.49 crore ($12.19 per MMBtu). The Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB), under the Commerce Ministry, will import 12,500 MT of sugar from abroad at a cost of Tk 64.20 crore with per kg value at Tk 82.
Loose sugar was on Wednesday selling in Dhaka markets atTk135 to Tk 140 per kg – much higher than the government-fixed price – citing short supply. On April 8, the government set price at Tk104 per kg for loose sugar and at Tk 109 for packaged sugar. Consumers, however, complained the ceiling hardly worked. In the retail market packaged sugar has hardly been available. And even for the loose sugar the consumers have to pay Tk135 to 140 or per kg, up from Tk120 to 125 a kg last week. On Wednesday, during visits to different markets in the capital this correspondent saw no packaged sugar in the stores. Traders reported no supply of sugar since Eid-ul-Fitr festival late last month. The wholesale companies have failed to deliver citing short supply. Importers blame the short supply on the high price of sugar in international market affecting domestic supply. They are waiting for the government to decide if they would go for import at higher prices. They too have reduced imports due to higher prices. Read more: Sugar price reduced by Tk 3 per kg: Commerce Ministry According to the government agency, Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB), the price of sugar increased by 15 percent in a month while it increased by more than 62 percent in one year. Salmat Sarder of Chadpur Store of Karwan Bazar told UNB that packaged sugar has not been available for a long time. Loose sugar purchased at the wholesale level is more than Tk130 per kg. Still, dealers are not giving purchase receipts.
Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi said traders have agreed to reduce the prices of sugar by Tk 5 per kg after the reduction in import duty on both raw and refined sugar last month. “As the import duty has been slashed, the prices of sugar can be reduced by Tk 4.5. However, we have requested the traders to reduce it by Tk 5 per kg and they agreed,” he told reporters a press briefing after the 6th meeting of the task force committee on commodity prices and market situation at the secretariat on Sunday. The minister hoped that the price of sugar would come down by Tk 5 per kg within the first week of Ramadan. Also Read: Have enough stock, no scope of price hike during Ramadan: Tipu “We will start monitoring from tomorrow. Currently, we’re assessing the impact of import duty reduction on sugar.” He assured that traders have enough stocks of oil and sugar.
Nowadays numerous people are suffering from health issues like cholesterol, diabetes, obesity, hypertension, etc. Refined sugar consumption is related to these conditions directly or indirectly. Therefore, many health-conscious people are exploring healthier options to sweeten their food and drinks. Let’s find out some healthy natural sweeteners as an alternative to refined sugar. 7 Healthy Alternatives of Refined Sugar Natural sweeteners have gained popularity due to their health benefits and low glycemic index. These sweeteners are derived from plant-based sources and offer a range of tastes, from fruity to earthy, making them versatile in cooking and baking. Here come seven healthy alternatives to refined sugar that you can incorporate into your diet. Misri It is also known as rock sugar or sugar candy. Misri is a popular sweetener in many parts of the world. It's made by crystallizing sugar cane juice, resulting in small, rock-like pieces that are used to sweeten teas, desserts, and other dishes. Unlike refined sugar, misri contains small amounts of minerals like iron and calcium, and it has a lower glycemic index, which means it doesn't cause spikes in blood sugar levels. Read More: 7 Healthy, Delicious Egg Recipes for Breakfast However, misri is still a form of sugar and should be used in moderation, but its unique flavor and health benefits make it a great alternative to refined sugar. Honey Honey is a thick, golden liquid produced by honeybees that contains vitamins, minerals, and plant compounds with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. The types of plant compounds depend on the bee and flower type. Honey polyphenols can help modulate inflammation, and it has a slightly lower glycemic index than table sugar, making it a healthier option. However, research on these benefits is limited. Despite being high in sugar and calories, honey should be consumed in moderation. Coconut Sugar It is a natural sweetener derived from the sap of coconut palm trees. It contains several vitamins and minerals, including iron, zinc, calcium, and potassium. Read More: 7 Exclusive Halwa Ideas, Recipes for holy Shab-e-Barat Moreover, it has a lower glycemic index compared to table sugar, meaning it causes a slower and steadier rise in blood sugar levels. This makes it a great option for people with diabetes or those looking to manage their blood sugar levels. Coconut sugar also has a delicious caramel-like flavor and can be used in baking or cooking as a 1:1 substitute for regular sugar.
The government has increased sugar price again, by Tk 5 per kg, which will be effective from February 1, 2023. As per discussion with the commerce ministry, a circular has been issued today (January 26, 2023) by the executive secretary of Bangladesh Sugar Refiners Association. After the price hike, the maximum retail price of unpackaged sugar will be Tk 107 while the price of packaged sugar will be Tk 112. Read more: 1250MT sugar on 42 trucks from India stuck at Benapole for a month “Taking into account the price increase in the international market and the exchange rate of the US dollar and the production cost going up, the price of unpackaged sugar per kg has been set at Tk 107 and packaged sugar at Tk 112 per kg – subject to discussion with the Ministry of Commerce,” the notification said. Earlier, the government increased the retail price of sugar in November 2022. Currently, the price of packaged sugar is Tk 107 and unpackaged sugar Tk 102 per kg. In the market, however, unpackaged sugar is sold at Tk 110 and packaged sugar at Tk 120 per kg. The retailers have blamed wholesalers for increasing the sugar price. Read More: Production stops at Joypurhat Sugar Mills for want of sugarcane
Forty-two trucks loaded with 1,250 tonnes of sugar from India remain stuck at Benapole port for the past 28 days, as the local customs authorities allegedly imposed a higher tariff than stipulated by the government of Bangladesh. According to the port officials, a total of 84 trucks carrying 2,500 tonnes of sugar imported in six consignments by Setu Enterprises arrived at Benapole port on December 25 last year. Of six consignments, three were released after paying a tariff of $430 for each tonne of sugar as per the rate set by the National Board of Revenue (NBR), said Abdul Latif, the clearing and forwarding (C&F) agent of Setu Enterprises. Read More: Gold worth Tk 1.5 cr seized at Benapole However, customs authorities then imposed a higher tariff of $570 per tonne for the remaining 1,250 tonnes of sugar following a complaint by the Bangladesh Sugar Refinery Association. In its complaint, the association stated that sugar is being released from the port by showing lower values than their actual worth. "The importer is paying demurrage of Tk2000 per truck for every day. There are port charges too. If it is not resolved soon, the importer will suffer a huge loss," he added. Read More: 26 rescued Bangladeshi fishermen return from India Indian truck driver Ashish Sarkar said he has been living in his truck for 28 days. "I don't know how many more days I will have to pass here fighting a severe cold," he added. In this regard, Joint Commissioner of Benapole Custom House Md Shafayet Hossain said that three consignments of sugar were released from the port following procedures. Since we have received a complaint, the higher authorities will look into the matter, he added. Read more: Trade halted at Benapole land port