Finance and Planning Minister Saifur Rahman yesterday ruled out transit and transhipment to India, saying the country's "entire road transport system will collapse within three months if the facilities are provided".
"Transit and transhipment to India is impossible because of the poor conditions of the roads," he told a seminar on trade with India and economic security of Bangladesh in the city. "The roads and bridges are not for trucks with a capacity of 30 to 35 tonnes."
The finance minister acknowledged that Indian goods are cheaper and of better quality, and therefore flood "our markets".
"We have opened up our market to foreign goods and there is no reason why there should be a restrictive policy for Indian goods."
He singled out informal trade with India a potent threat to local industries but said it "cannot be stopped completely because of geographical proximity".
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