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Wednesday, Feb 13, 2002

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Haldia-Chittagong port box service launched

Our Bureau

KOLKATA, Feb. 12

A NEW container shipping service has been launched between Haldia dock and Chittagong port in Bangladesh to facilitate trade between the two countries.

H R C Shipping of Dhaka has already commenced the service, the first sailing from Haldia having taken place on Saturday last.

In the first sailing, "Banga Barta'', a 500-TEU container vessel loaded boxes at Haldia for shipments to Chittagong.

The distance from Haldia to Chittagong would be covered in 22 hours, according to Capt S. Bose, General Manager of United Liner Agency, the agent of the Bangladeshi shipping company.

The next sailing ("Banga Lanka'', 538 TEUs) is due on February 16.

The service is expected to help shippers facing problems in sending their consignments by road.

At the Petrapole-Benapole road checkpost, the trucks are detained for a long time, causing untold suffering to transporters as well as traders on both sides of the border.

There are a host of other problems also.

As it is the number of working days in both the countries is limited.

In Bangladesh, Friday is a holiday whereas on this side, Saturdays and Sundays are holidays.

The Chittagong service from Haldia, being a fixed-day service, offers sailing every Saturday.

The traders availing themselves of the service, it is therefore felt, will save substantially on time.

The Haldia-Chittagong service is part of H R C Shipping's Chittagong-Colombo-Haldia-Chittagong service.

The shipping line also operates services between Chittagong and Port Klang and between Colombo and Tuticorin.

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