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Bangladesh to build new 100,000 TEU rail inland container depot

Aiming to give a boost to the movement of rail-based containerised cargo, Bangladesh is set to build another inland container depot (ICD) in the Ghorashal area in Narsingdi district in central Bangladesh.

The ICD aims to cater services to the nearest industrial hubs and is expected to be operational by 2026. Transportation of raw materials and produces to and from the nearby factories will be easier once the depot is built.

The depot will be built on 20,000m² of land owned by Bangladesh Railway having an annual handling capacity of 100,000 TEUs.

State-owned Container Company of Bangladesh Ltd (CCBL) last week invited bids for the construction of the multimodal ICD on Design-Build-Finance-Operate-Maintain-Transfer (DBFOMT) basis.

To be built under the public private partnership (PPP) model the builder will operate the ICD for 25 years and then will hand it over to the CCBL. The builder and the CCBL will share profit during the period.

The ICD will also facilitate the movement of rail-based boxes to and from Bangladesh and neighbouring countries, especially to India, according to officials.

A railway official said Ghorashal is an industrial zone and the demand for transporting cargo from there is growing every year. Once built, the depot will also be able to facilitate the transportation of containerised cargo to and from factories in neighbouring Mymensingh and Gazipur districts.

Presently, Bangladesh Railway has one ICD in Dhaka which will be relocated in the next five years while work is progressing to build another ICD in Gazipur district with an annual capacity of handling 354,000 TEUs.

The process to build another rail-ICD in Chittagong has been suspended due to legal complications.

Bangladesh Railway has a plan to build another ICD on the western bank of the Jamuna River under Sirajganj district further to facilitate the carriage of containers from neighbouring India from where Bangladesh imports goods worth around US$14 billion annually.

Sharar Nayel
Asia Correspondent

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