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Govt approves reappointment of PSI firms
Aug '08
At a cabinet committee meeting held on August 28, the proposal to reappoint and maintain four Pre-shipment companies (PSI) - Bureau Veritas, SGS, OMIC and ITS, until December 2009 was approved by the Government.

According to the original agreement, these PSI companies were to expire by this month while another firm, Cotecna, was already cancelled from the list by the National Bureau of Revenue (NBR) due to its proven charges of massive irregularities.

PSI companies were formed in Bangladesh in the year 2001 to take over the responsibilities of the customs department which were found to have been inefficient in their work and corrupt in their practices.

As such one of the key obligations of the PSI companies is also to help the NBR develop the skills and efficiency of its customs officials. However, Mr AB Mirza Azizul Islam, Finance Adviser, who also acted as a chairman at the meeting, told the reporters, “PSI companies will not be necessary after 2009, as the customs department is likely to achieve the required efficiency by that time.”

Nonetheless, the companies would be paid a total of Tk3,750 million for their services. In the meanwhile, during a meeting of the cabinet committee on economic affairs, the Privatization Commission was asked to re-examine the proposal for privatization of the state-owned Karnaphuli Rayon and Chemical Mills and Particle Board & Veneer Plant.

The meeting, however, asked the PC to take five state-owned enterprises (SoEs) off the privatisation drive by returning them to their respective ministries. These SoEs are: Chittaranjan Cotton Mills, Daulatpur Jute Mills, Service Facilities Centres, Textile Facilities Centre and Khulna Newsprint Mills.

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