© MD Kajol

With Bangladeshi factories remaining shut throughout this week, due to Eid-ul-Azha holidays, vessels are having to leave Chittagong port half empty owing to a lack of cargo.

The factories closed on June 26, and will only reopen this weekend.

But shipping executives said ships will not be fully laden until the end of next week, with factories requiring three to four days to produce goods.

Some agents have asked ships to wait at the outer anchorage of the port for two-to-three days in the hope they can amass an additional 200 to 300 teu while they wait, said one source.

One official at a large shipping company in Chittagong told The Loadstar this morning that his 2,000-teu vessel was only receiving 600 to 700 teu of exports, compared with 1,500 teu or more normally.

“There is a dearth of empty containers as well, since importers are not getting deliveries in the holiday period. We are even not getting empty containers to carry,” he said.

Cargo sent to depots before Eid are now starting to be moved out of the port, resulting in even fewer containers in the port yards.

Ruhul Amin Sikder (Biplob), secretary general, Bangladesh Inland Container Depots Association (BICDA) said usually the depots in Chittagong send up to 2,500-teu of export goods a day, but since the beginning of this week it has been just 1,300 teu on average.

“We can say the vessels are using just half of their container-carrying capacity at the moment,” he said.

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