Cabinet approves law enhancing BSC’s stake in overseas shipment

DHAKA, Jan 28, 2019 : The cabinet today approved the draft of
Bangladesh Flag Carrying Vessels (Protection) Act, 2019 enhancing state-run Bangladesh Shipping Corporation’s (BSC) stake in overseas shipment.

The cabinet gave the approval in principle in its weekly meeting with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair in the PMO,” Cabinet Secretary Md. Shafiul Alam told a media briefing at Bangladesh Secretariat.

He said the proposed law suggested a mandatory provision under which the BSC ship would carry at least 50 percent of goods to be exported and imported.

The new law will replace Bangladesh Flag Vessels (protection) Ordinance, 1982 under which BSC ocean going fleet’s stake in import-export shipments was 40 percent.

The new law was also required as the Supreme Court earlier declared null and void all ordinances which were framed by previous military regimes.

“The provision will promote the state owned Bangladesh Shipping
Corporation,” the cabinet secretary said.

The cabinet today simultaneously gave final approval to the draft of
“Bangladesh EPZ Labour Law, 2019” which earlier was enforced since January 15, 2019 through promulgation of an ordinance.

The cabinet on December 3, 2018 had given approval in principle to the draft allowing trade union activities in Export Processing Zones (EPZs).

Alam said the original draft was placed before the cabinet without any changes for endorsement of the new parliament.

The law would equip EPZ workers with rights to enforce work stoppage and factory lock-outs while it also accommodated some ILO recommendations and several observations of Canada and the United States to make it more labour friendly.

The Cabinet Division today placed before the meeting a summary on the execution of cabinet decisions during the time from January 2018 to December 2018.

During the time the cabinet held 35 meetings and took 313 decisions, 270 of which were executed by now.

At that time the parliament framed 193 acts and the government promulgated 10 ordinances while process is underway to turn 20 draft legislations into law, the cabinet secretary said.