Govt suspends fish export
Only shrimp export allowedStaff Correspondent
The government on Tuesday banned export of Hilsa and all kinds of other fish, except shrimp, till further order following dissatisfaction expressed by consumers over soaring fish prices in Ramadan.
The commerce ministry in a press release said, ‘The government has decided to suspend export of all kinds of fish including Hilsa, except shrimps, till further notice for smooth supply in line with the demand and keeping the price stable during the holy month of Ramadan.’
The ministry took the move after the chairman of the parliamentary standing committee on commerce ministry on Monday said that he would recommend that the government ban fish export as he faced consumers’ wrath over soaring prices of fish during visits to two kitchen markets in the city.
Some shoppers blasted the JS body chief ABM Abul Qasem when he claimed that the prices of essentials were stable.
‘My family is fond of Hilsa but there is no fish in the market. The sellers demand Tk 1,000 for a kilo of Hilsa and at the same time Hilsa is being exported… This is not acceptable,’ an angry buyer told Qasem at Mohammadpur Krishi Market.
The Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry on Sunday also urged the government to ban export of fish till the end of Ramadan.
The apex trade body in a press release said that its monitoring cell had observed that prices of all kinds of fish had increased and gone beyond the purchasing capacity of general consumers.
Earlier on July 9, the government had imposed ban on export of essential items including green chilli, onion, garlic and aubergine following the request of the FBCCI.
‘The prices of those essential items have either remained stable or shown downtrend after the ban was imposed,’ said the trade body, adding that imposition of a ban on export of fish would also keep the prices of fish within the reach of the consumers.
Buyers said that the price of Hilsa skyrocketed in the recent weeks because of huge export of the fish to the Indian market.
Hilsha was retailing at Tk 1,000-Tk 1,100 a kg on Friday while it was sold at Tk 900-Tk 1,000 a kg two weeks before.
Retailers at different city markets said that prices of fish like rohita, katla, pangas and tilapia went up by Tk 100 a kg, Tk 50 a kg, Tk 20 a kg and Tk 30 to Tk 50 a kg respectively from one week before the start of Ramadan.
Rohita, katla, pangas and tilapia were retailing at Tk 350 to Tk 400 a kg, Tk 250 to Tk 400 a kg, Tk 170 to Tk 470 a kg and Tk 150 to Tk 170 a kg respectively, depending on their size and quality, on Friday.
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