Bangladesh Sugar Refiners Want End to Export Ban
May 31- Bangladesh’s private sector sugar refiners on Saturday asked the government to lift a ban on exports they say is causing them big losses.
“We placed our demand to the government and sought support for helping offset the losses,” said Golam Mostafa, secretary general of the Bangladesh Sugar Refiners Association (BSRA).
“We incur losses at nearly 20 cent for each kilogramme,” Mostafa, also the chairman of the Deshbandhu Group, .
In March, Bangladesh banned sugar exports indefinitely to boost supply on the local market and contain prices.
Mostafa said that they had imported raw sugar at around $743 per tonne but had to sell the finished sugar at about $548 on local markets.
Nearly 1.0 million tonnes of refined sugar remain unsold, he said.
Some seven sugar refiners are in operation in the country with annual production capacity of 2.4 million tonnes compared with domestic demand of 1.4 million tonnes.
There are also 14 sugar mills managed by the state-run Bangladesh Sugar and Food Industries Corp with production capacity of 125,000 tonnes.
Dhaka, Jan 10 – Bangladeshi firms are negotiating with buyers in Europe and elsewhere to export refined sugar, after demand and prices rose following poor production in India, a business leader said on Sunday.
“We have found markets for our refined sugar after a fall in production in India, a major global supplier, and we are about to sign deals with a number of European and Middle Eastern countries,” said Abdul Matlub Ahmad, owner of Kaliachapra Sugar Mills Ltd and Nitol Sugar Mills Ltd.
He told Reuters there were six refineries in Bangladesh with a combined annual capacity of 1.8 million tonnes, compared with domestic demand for 1.2 million tonnes.
There are also 14 sugar mills managed by state-run Bangladesh Sugar and Food Industries Corp with a production capacity of 125,000 tonnes.
“One of our owners has already negotiated for supply of 12,000 tonnes of crystal sugar to Poland and another is negotiating with some other buyers,” said Matlub, also a member of the Bangladesh Sugar Refinery Owners Association.
He said Poland offered duty free access to Bangladesh sugar and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Yemen wanted to buy 4,000 tonnes of sugar this year each.
Mohammed Mohiuddin, deputy managing director of the Abdul Momen Sugar Mills Ltd, said it was in talks with China and a number of UAE-based buyers to export surplus sugar.
Poor sugarcane production in India, the second largest sugar producing country in the world, is the main reason behind high demand for Bangladeshi sugar.
“Moreover, India itself planned to import three million tonnes of white sugar to meet its demand,” said Matlub, also the president of Bangladesh India Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
He said Bangladeshi refinery mills produce “European Commission grade” refined sugar and China, South Korea, Canada and some African countries were potential markets.
“China is a big market for us and if we can access it with duty-free facility that will help reduce our huge trade gap with them,” Matlub said.
Bangladeshi refineries import raw sugar mostly from Brazil