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24 November, 2017 12:23:04 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 24 November, 2017 09:49:20 AM
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S’pore firms offer to import sand

River dredging
ANISUR RAHMAN KHAN
S’pore firms offer to import sand

Two Singaporean companies have submitted their respective proposals to import dredged sand from Bangladesh, but the authorities are yet to take any decision in this regard. Land ministry sources explained to The Independent that there is no clause in the existing laws of the country to export dredged sand. Singapore-based Infras­truc­ture Ltd, and RIZQ Engineering and Services PTE Ltd submitted their respective proposals to the land ministry in October.

“The Singaporean companies will pay royalty and take the dredged sand to their country. Besides, they will dredge the rivers with their own cutter-suction dredgers free of cost. We have already informed the concerned ministry about the matter,” Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) chairman Commodore M Mozammel Huq told The Independent yesterday. The BIWTA has already given its consent to the export of the dredged sand and given the survey alignments.

Huq said that RIZQ Engineering and Services PTE Ltd has already got the approval for dredging a section of the Jamuna according to the survey

alignment. The authorities could “take the opportunity” by accepting the Singaporean companies’ proposals, the BIWTA chairman observed.

“There is no law or rule to export sand from Bangladesh. So, we are yet to take a decision in this regard,” Md Siraj Uddin Ahmed, additional secretary of the land ministry, told this correspondent yesterday.

He said a Singaporean company has submitted a proposal to import dredged sand from Bangladesh. According to the proposal, the Singaporean company has offered to buy reclamation sand at USD 1.30 per cubic metre.

The company will use an appropriate number of lighters to load the vessels in less than five days, depending on the distance of the sand site to the mother vessel. It can use 10 to 15 lighters simultaneously and each lighter will take five to eight hours to load the vessels.

The company will be able to supply six vessels with a capacity of 54,000–56,000 tonnes per month. With this, it will be able to work out 324,000–336,000 tonnes per month, the proposal said.

The distance between Chittagong and Singapore is around 1,860 nautical miles and the full-laden vessels will take five to six days to reach Singapore travelling at 12 to 13 knots.

Bangladesh could cash in on the current ban on sea-sand export from Vietnam and Cambodia, the proposal said. Bangladesh can act as a good alternative to the current supply pool even after Vietnam and Cambodia resume supply.

Singapore is a small island country with a growing population. Thus, the use and creation of land is integral to its development.

Singapore carried out its first land reclamation exercise in 1982. It has reclamation projects lined up for the next 10 years, for which it needs a huge amount of sand. The island of Pulau Tekong, the Tuas super port, and the recently finished Changi Terminal 4 are just a few of these projects.

RIZQ is committed to bringing new supply sources to Singapore, working closely with government bodies like Jurong Town Council and various government officials from around the region. The company is ready to buy reclamation sand for Singapore from Bangladesh.

SHK/DG

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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