Bangladesh’s National Board of Revenue Proposes Trade Facilitation Development under the SASEC Program
22 December 2021
The National Board of Revenue (NBR) of the Government of Bangladesh has drafted a proposal to upgrade trade infrastructure and three priority land ports to improve trade with its neighbors in the subregion. The land ports include Akhaura Land Port in Brahmanbaria, Sonamasjid Land Port in Chapainawabganj, and Tamabil Land Port in Sylhet. The NBR submitted the proposal for the project “Integrated Trade Facilitation Development under the South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation Development Program” to the country’s Planning Commission on 22 December 2021.
The project has an estimated cost of Tk 314 crore (around $36.4 million). Tk 51 crore (around $5.91 million) is set to come from government financing, while the rest of Tk 263 crore (around $30.5 million) is set to be provided by an Asian Development Bank loan.
The proposed project is set to support improvement of Bangladesh's border infrastructure and trade facilitation environment, thereby contributing to the national goals of promoting a favorable industrialization and trade policy regime. The Program will promote Bangladesh's implementation of the World Trade Organization's Trade Facilitation Agreement, and related best practices on transport and trade facilitation. The Program will also support the Government of Bangladesh to establish and improve border infrastructure as public goods, which will reduce the cost and time of cross-border transactions and handle international transit cargos.
NBR officials aim to complete the five year project by March 2026.
New Age shares that according to Ms. Zakia Sultana, Bangladesh NBR member (Customs audit, modernization and international trade), the main objective of the project is to facilitate international trade and commerce among South Asian countries, which would play a key role in maintaining a smooth supply chain among the neighboring countries at a low cost while keeping trade and commerce more secure.