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Mizzima: Burmese traders in heavy l

Burmese traders in heavy loss, selling mangoes to Bangladesh

Dhaka, June 22, 2000
Mizzima News Group

As ?mango season? enters in Burma in May-June, Burmese traders who are
doing legal border trade between Burma and Bangladesh have tried to
export mangoes to Bangladesh but met with heavy loss as the price
offered by the Bangladesh side is much less than what they expected.

Traders from Arakan State and other parts of Burma carry 50,000 to
100,000 mangoes each person via water route and sell them to the
wholesale dealers at Taknaf, border town in Bangladesh.

Bangladesh traders at Taknaf are offering one Taka (about seven Kyats)
per mango.

The Burmese traders had to buy the mangoes with ten Kyats per mango in
Burma but the total cost reached to 15 Kyat (about two Taka) per mango
after all "hafta" or protection money imposed by police, custom and army
personnel was added.

?If we don?t sell the mangoes with the price given by the Bangladesh
side as soon as we could, our mangoes will get bad, said a Burmese

As the result, a Burmese trader loses one Taka per mango and the average
total lost for a trader is from Kyat 50, 000 to one lakh in this month.
Twenty- three Burmese mango-traders have so far reached to Taknaf border
town (in Bangladesh) during this month and everybody faced the same

A mango is sold with 4 to 5 Taka in Bangladesh markets.

Last summer too, Burmese traders were in loss when they did onion
business as the wholesale dealers from Bangladesh offered price for
onion four to five times less than the fixed price.