With a fifth of the Bangladesh's yearly jute exports are at stake, following imposition of anti-dumping duty for a period of five years on imports of jute and its products from Bangladesh and Nepal by the Indian government to protect its domestic industry. The national jute advisory committee of Bangladesh held a meeting at the Textiles and Jute Ministry deciding to decide immediately engage with India for lifting of the anti-dumping duty on import of jute products.
At the meeting it was also decided that the duty issuance would be discussed during Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's visit to India which is expected next month.
A number of stakeholders, who participated in the meeting, said that they would use â€œdiplomatic and political" means first before going for any legal recourse involving the World Trade Organization (WTO).
According to sources, following the imposition of the anti-dumping duty since the January 5 ranging from USD 6.30 to USD 351.72 per tonne, jute products worth over USD 12 million under shipment to India has got stuck in the ports.
Of the total USD 919 million worth of jute and jute goods Bangladesh exported in the last financial year (2015-16), over USD 260 million of the same were sent to India.
Industry sources said that the Indian move, came as part of its protection mechanism to cushion its local jute industry from regional competition, would have no implication on raw jute import from Bangladesh. But it already started to have a negative impact on the import of jute goods from Bangladesh.
According to the Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industries (DCCI), Indian market accounts for 20 percent of Bangladesh's jute goods exports, which is equivalent to only 8 percent of entire Indian local market share and this insignificant percentage can't in anyway dump their local jute market.
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