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    Default Bangladesh criticises India's ban on cotton export

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    Bangladesh on Friday termed India's ban on cotton export as "unfortunate", saying the move is against the norms of international trade.

    The Commerce Ministry said the repeated ban on cotton by India is threatening Bangladesh's textiles industry.

    "India imposed ban on export of main raw material leaving aside trade rules and regulations. We think it (ban) is against the norms of international trade," Commerce Secretary M. Ghulam Hossain told reporters.

    Hossain said the ministry condemned India's "unexpected move" and wrote to the Indian government for withdrawal.

    "If not, Indian government has been urged to take steps to release all agreements related to cotton to ensure unloading of inputs from ports smoothly," he said.

    India on Monday banned cotton exports apprehending shortfall in domestic market and hoarding in warehouses abroad.

    Referring to the world market cotton price, the top Bangladeshi bureaucrat of the Commerce Ministry said production of the textile input was good and price was low too.

    Hossain said he, however, expected India's ban on cotton export would not hurt local textiles industry as the ministry was keeping vigil against artificial enhancement of the cotton price.

    "We are (also) looking for alternative sources of import of cotton such as Uzbekistan, Australia and the United States," he said adding that a high-powered delegation led by Commerce Minister Faruq Khan would visit next month to Uzbekistan to explore possibility of importing cotton to meet Bangladesh's demand.

    Apart from this, he said, the ministry would contact US Cotton Council to this end.

    The issue of India's ban on cotton import would be discussed in the upcoming Joint Trade Commission (JTC) meeting to be held on March 28-29 in New Delhi.



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