The National Board of Revenue (NBR) will soon place a proposal to buy container scanners for Chittagong Seaport with the government's purchase committee for approval as the regulator intends to end a protracted course by July.
“The procurement proposal will be sent to the purchase committee and after approval we will finish the work by July,” NBR Chairman Muhammad Abdul Mazid told the news agency yesterday.
The NBR had moved years ago to upgrade the container-handling facilities in the country's prime seaport that handles more than 80 percent of the imports and exports, but the process was stalled over a bidding debacle.
The BNP-led four-party coalition initiated the scheme in 2003 after security agencies seized a huge quantity of arms and ammunition in the port area.
Initially, the Asian Development Bank was supposed to provide US$ 30.06 million in loan under an integrated scheme envisaging installation of the container scanners. Construction of a flyover was another important component of the project.
But a complex situation surfaced later.
The government then wanted to re-tender the installation work. But the ADB was not happy with the move and decided not to provide the fund.
The lending agency's decision has prompted the government to mobilise the fund from domestic sources.