The UK government is likely to lift the ban on direct air cargo from Dhaka to London next week, putting an end to the 23-month embargo.
The announcement may come on next Sunday at a programme where representatives from both the UK and Bangladesh government will remain present, said sources at civil aviation and tourism ministry.
Sources also said that the UK government will also give some observations about the security and safety at the country’s premier airport Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport while lifting the ban.
“Ban may go. The announcement would come on Sunday”, Civil Aviation and tourism ministry additional secretary Abul Hasnat Md Ziaul Haque said to daily sun adding that it will be a matter of great relief from the country.
While asked whether the UK Department of Transport (DFT) impose any new condition, he said that not like this.
They may give some observations about the security.
Citing the security concern and mismanagement at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport, the UK government imposed the temporary ban on direct air cargo shipments from Dhaka to London on March 8, 2016, hurting the trade between the two countries and airport image before the world.
Since the ban, CAAB and Biman Bangladesh Airlines have been working relentlessly for improving the security standards at the country’s premier airport. According to UK’s conditions, the government appointed British company Redline Aviation Security Limited to upgrade security systems and providing training to the airport officials at HSIA.
With support from Redline Security, civil aviation and airport authorities installed Explosive Detective System (EDS) and Explosive Trace Detector (ETD) machines at HSIA cargo village area to meet the security standards of the UK and European Union (EU).
The authorities also installed eight dual s-ray scanning machines for screening big baggage, 14 scanning machines for handbag screening, six liquid expulsive detection machines, nine under-vehicle scanning devices, five barrier gates with RFID card reader machines and dog squad to strengthen the security features at the airport.
A three-member team from the UK visited HSIA from November 22 to 27 last year and expressed satisfaction over the progress made in security and logistics systems. After the UK team’s visit, then Civil Aviation and Tourism Minister Rashed Khan Menon met officials of UK Department of Transport (DFT) to discuss the withdrawal of the ban in November last week.
However, the UK government on January imposed some fresh condition.
Due to the ban, cargo handling authority Biman Bangladesh Airlines is losing huge revenue while businesses facing huge difficulties in cargo shipments. Due to the ban, EU-bound cargo airlines from Bangladesh have to rescreen goods in a third country.