Service crew

New drop shipping service with China starts this month

Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) SA, one of the world’s leading container shipping companies, is set to launch a weekly container ship service between China and Bangladesh at the end of this month. Photo: Collected

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Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) SA, one of the world’s leading container shipping companies, is set to launch a weekly container ship service between China and Bangladesh at the end of this month. Photo: Collected

Under the service, the ships will depart from Hong Kong and connect with Yantian and Shekou in southern China before calling at Singapore and Tanjung Pelepas before arriving in Chattogram.

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A new weekly container ship service between China and Bangladesh will debut in the last week of this month, creating an opportunity to accelerate the country’s import and export trade.

Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) SA, one of the world’s leading container carriers, will launch the service, called “Bengal Service”, to provide customers with a direct link between South China and Chattogram.

Additionally, the service will enable connections for imports and exports from Bangladesh through transshipment hubs in Singapore and Tanjung Pelepas in Malaysia, MSC said on its official website recently.

As the first voyage under the service, MSC Kymea will depart Hong Kong on April 27 and is scheduled to arrive in Chattogram on May 11.

Under the service, the ships will depart from Hong Kong and connect with Yantian and Shekou in southern China before calling at Singapore and Tanjung Pelepas before arriving in Chattogram.

On the way back, the ships will again pass through Singapore and Tanjung Pelepas to reach Hong Kong.

Ajmir Hossain Chowdhury, head of operations and logistics at MSC, said he had asked the Chattogram Port Authority (CPA) to get permission for four of its ships to operate the service.

“Initially they would arrive at Chattogram Port weekly as we plan to gradually increase the number of voyages,” he said.

Chowdhury went on to say that the service would reduce the country’s import cargo journey time by at least 15 days and export to some extent.

It currently takes at least a month or more for goods from China to reach Chattogram through the transshipment ports of Singapore and Tanjung Pelepas, where goods often sit idle for 10-12 days due to congestion, a- he added.

About 60% of the raw materials needed by local garment factories come from China.

Syed Nazrul Islam, first vice-president of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association, said direct shipping services to and from China would be very helpful as Bangladesh imports a lot of raw materials from the country, in particular for the clothing sector.

“The initiative will reduce time and cost and ultimately help Bangladesh become more competitive in the global market,” Islam added.

Three shipping companies currently have China-Bangladesh services. These are Sealand Asia, a company of Mearsk, Sinokor and HMM Joint Services, and CNC Line, a company of French transport and logistics provider CMA CGM.