The Bangladeshi freight forwarders Association (BAFFA) has increased forwarding charges by 57% for each import bill due to the recent price hike of fuel oil in the local market. The importers and apparel exporters have protested against such a hike. Even freight forwarders have questioned the high charge as it has remained unchanged since 2014. They have argued that since 2014, the delivery order fee has not increased even though the cost of running a business has hiked owing to the increase in the price of gas, electricity, water, diesel, etc.
Since 2013, BAFFA has been charging only US35$ per import bill but now it has decided to raise it to US$55. The Bangladesh Garment Manufacturer and Exporters Association is the primary consumer of the port of Chittagong to import raw materials for manufacturing finished goods. They have heavily protested this hike and have requested BAFFA to roll back the raised charges. The Bangladesh Garment Manufacturer and Exporters Association said by arbitrarily realizing US$35 against each import bill against the US$20 fixed by the ministry of shipping. The BFFA has charged extra to the apparel exporters by US$189 million during the last eight years. They added that if the 57% forwarding charge hike remains in force, then the apparel makers will need to pay an extra US$55 million annually.
The forwarding charges hike has come as a shock to garment makers who are experiencing a steep fall in work orders during the last couple of months.