Narinjara News

Smuggling  only table salt, please!

Sittwe, 1
st July 03For some time the table salt has topped the list of items smuggled into Bangladesh from Burma.  Everyday between 1,000 to 3,000 tonnes of chemical fertilizer including urea are smuggled into Burma while on their return trip they carry table salt back.

The smugglers are required to pay at least 250 US dollars for each consignment to the western commander as protection money.  The price of a kilo of salt is kyat 20, which is about taka 1.50.  The price of a kilo of salt in Bangladesh is taka seven in the wholesale market.

In recent months there have been a number of raids in the salt warehouses in the southeastern part of Bangladesh by law enforcement agencies.  The salt works owners of Bangladesh have again and again expressed their discontent for the illegal smuggling of salt into the country. 

Though the two countries have signed a number of business protocols, mostly aimed at stopping smuggling, the Burmese junta officials have rarely complied with the declarations.  Smuggling is still as rampant as before, a businessman who has a legal trade with Bangladesh said. 

Two of the salt works owners who have become millionaires by smuggling salt in collusion with the military intelligence are U Kyaw Zan and U Hla Maung.  #