NEFFA, CCBA to sign accord

Kathmandu, August 22:

Nepal Freight Forwarders Association (NEFFA) is going to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Calcutta Customers Brokers Association (CCBA) — chaired by I K Ghosh — to boost Nepali foreign trade.

According to Namgyal Lama, president of NEFFA, an intensive discussion was held with CCBA in Kolkata recently in a bid to facilitate Nepali goods being exported to third countries from the Kolkata port. CCBA is the main facilitator for Nepali goods being exported to third country from Kolkata Port. Nepali export has been badly hit due to various hurdles created at the port for long, Lama told The Himalayan Times. Kolkata has been a gateway for export-import trade.

“If there is any problem in the shipment of goods going to third countries, we are ready to resolve the problem, assured Surya Bahadur Manandhar, executive director of Nepal-Inter Modal Transport Development Board, an undertaking of the government.

Manandhar disclosed that bilateral cargo between the two countries is going to be operated soon which will ultimately help and facilitate Nepali foreign trade. He said that ICD is being operated smoothly these days.

Shipping agents at Kolkata Customs cheat exporters and charge extra amount of money that has created problems in boosting Nepali foreign trade, alleged Namgyal Lama, president of NEFFA. “Shipping liners are responsible for issuing ‘No Objection Certificate’ (NOC) without which goods cannot be passed from the Customs point,” he added. Lama alleged that Indian customs in Kolkata is creating problems. “Pilferage problem has been occurred at times. Therefore, joint efforts from CCBA, and Calcutta Port Trust (CPT) is the must,” he suggested.

During the visit, Lama also met V K Chaudhary, president of Federation of Freight Forwarders Association of India (FFFAI) including former president Sri Nivasan. He held talks with Air Cargo Association of India (ACAI) also. “They have assured support for Nepal for the smooth movement of goods from India through ‘Nepal transit’ by air to export to USA and other European countries that will ultimately help in boosting Nepali foreign trade,” he said. If the system is improved at customs point and ports along with effective transit facilities, export will cost cheaper as it will help in reducing fright forwarding costs.