French liner giant CMA CGM has had to put its impending services for the Bangladesh market on hold following a decision by the National Board of Revenue (NBR) to revoke its two year licence to operate in the country.
The unexplained move, which comes a scant few days before CMA CGM officially launched operations, will particularly impact exporters that had been banking on the French liner"s lower market rates as compared to those on offer by competitors Maersk Line, APL and Hapag-Lloyd.
?Our company will charge $900 for per teu from Chittagong to European destinations instead of existing average rate of $950 per teu,? CMA CGM country representative Nelum Attanayake told.
He added that rates were expected to drop as low as $650-$700 in the future upon the introduction of competitive economic strategies.
The NBR"s decision has been criticised by the French trade commissioner. ?It sends a very bad signal to foreign investors who may consider Bangladesh as a legally-secured place to invest, at a time when Bangladesh is competing to attract international investment to support its economic growth and development,? he is reported as having written in a letter to the board.