November 12, 2012


Bangladesh's poultry industry owners to certify duty-free machinery use



The authority of giving clearance to the businesses by certifying the proper use of duty-free machinery, which is required by the customs officials, are being argued by leaders of the poultry industry and breeders associations.


Leaders of both the associations claimed that they deserve the authorisation from the National Board of Revenue (NBR) to do it.


Poultry and breeders industry owners can import duty-free machinery for local farms. According to the customs rules, the association leaders have to ensure that the duty-free machinery is installed in the industry properly. The association leaders have to furnish a certificate after inspection of farms on proper use of the duty-free machinery. The NBR framed the rule to check misuse of the duty-free facilities.


Earlier, the revenue board gave the permission to the poultry association to inspect factories and issue certificates within six months of import for ensuring proper use of the duty-free machinery. In the current fiscal budget, the authorisation has been shifted to the breeders' association following a request of the Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock.


After shifting of the authority, the Bangladesh Poultry Industry Association (BPIA) leaders reacted sharply claiming that some small industries and marginal farmers were facing problems with getting certificates after the change of rules.


Recently, at a meeting the poultry industry leaders raised the issue and urged the customs authority to re-introduce the previous system by giving back the authority to them.


Former poultry industry association president Kaiser Rahman said, "It is an unnecessary change as it hurts the small farmers."


"Small farmers cannot afford to be members of the breeders association as it comprises all big firms with quite a large membership fee. As far as I know, they are facing a problem with getting certificates from the breeders association," he said.


The poultry industry association includes all associations related to poultry, dairy and fisheries farms.


"Shifting the authority of certificate issuance to the breeders association has caused a problem for the other farms. The BPIA was doing its job smoothly without any difficulties," Rahman said.


Breeders Association of Bangladesh (BAB) general secretary Syedur Rahman Babu, who is also owner of Lion Agro, said their association is a platform of breeders. It is not any wing under the poultry association. He said the breeders association deserved the right as the members of the association are both importers and users of the duty-free machinery.


"We had to pay charge to the poultry association for getting the certificate, while it is now being provided free of cost," he said.


He added the dairy and fisheries industry is also part of the breeders and the farmers can get the certificates from the association easily.


A senior customs official said they have requested the livestock ministry to examine the issue as the NBR changed the rules in the budget following its recommendation.


"We have also realised the problem faced by the poultry association. Other stakeholders of the poultry association have faced problems as the certification authority has been handed over only to the breeders association," he said.

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