Govt pledges to calm MS rod market
Thursday, 01 May 2008

Staff Correspondent

The government will implement the recommendations of a high-powered committee in an effort to stabilise the mild steel rod market, an adviser said Wednesday.

The committee had been formed to find out the reason for instability in the rod market. There were eight recommendations in the report, commerce adviser Hossain Zillur Rahman told reporters at the Secretariat.

The recommendations included revenue policy, import policy for rods, keeping market prices at a "rational level", creating competitive market and an end to monopoly, Zillur said.

To come to a final decision, home, finance, commerce and shipping ministries would have to sit together and review the recommendations, the adviser added.

"We have to keep the rod market at a rational level. Those connected to this market should look into the matter," the adviser said. "We won't accept any irrational suggestion by any party in this regard. Prices will not be fixed by force," he said.

The probe committee chief and public works secretary ASM Rashidul Hai told bdnews24.com Tuesday that they had finalised the probe report.

The secretary said: "The probe committee held a meeting Tuesday and the report was finalised." "We were supposed to submit the report by Apr 30. We are able to do that," he added.

Earlier, the committee led by Hai and a taskforce team visited several ship- breaking yards at Bhatiary in Chittagong on Monday and held a meeting with scrap ship traders, re-rolling millers and rod traders at the Circuit House. The businessmen were asked to reset the prices of scrap iron or scrap plates in one day (Tuesday).

The prices of rod were unchanged in Chittagong until Tuesday. A tonne of 40-grade rods was sold at Tk 64,000 and 60-grade rods at Tk 70,000-Tk 72,000 at various shops at Sholoshahar in Chittagong.

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