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Joint Working Group


The existing IWT logistics chain, involves a number of stakeholders playing different roles at various stages.

As per recommendations of proposed low carbon strategy for IWT sector, it was agreed to establish an empowered working group for Inland Waterways promotion. This group shall provide requisite forum for joint assessment of various barriers faced and periodic monitoring of implementation of various recommendations especially issues relating to their respective department.

Specifically, the group is expected to play the following roles:

  • Facilitate and fast track the process of modal shift to IWT and its overall development.
  • Provide a single window mechanism for facilitating and fast tracking various decisions or grant of permissions required from its constituent members for IWT promotion and implementation of pilot program.
  • Undertake assessment of various barriers faced in IWT promotion and development. Make necessary interventions, through its members for removal of barriers and improving commercial viability of IWT in preparation for pilot program.
  • Convene regularly and monitor progress of various endeavours for modal shift to IWT and pilot program implementation. Resolve any impediments as may be faced by various stakeholders as reported by group’s constituent members.
  • Facilitate development of financial incentives including but not limited tax incentives, subsidies & grants for IWT promotion as well as impositions of green taxes on competing and carbon inefficient modes.

  • Structure of Joint Working Group:

    The JWG shall have a tiered structure with following types of members:


    1. Core members: The key agencies having active and continuous operational roles & responsibilities across various stages of Logistics chain for Inland Waterway Sector. These include;

    • Ministry of Shipping
    • Bangladesh inland Waterways Transport Authority
    • Dhaka River Port(s)
    • Representative Vessel Operator-Summit Alliance Port Limited
    • Chittagong Port Authority
    • Representative Logistics Service providers:
      • Kuehne + Nagel
      • APL Logistics
      • Hapag Lloyd
      • Any other agencies as may be invited by Ministry of Shipping
    • Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association
    • Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association
    • Bangladesh Customs
    • Ready Made Garment Buying Houses:
    • H&M
    • C&A
    • Any other buying house as may be invited by Ministry of Shipping

    These core members shall form the necessary quorum in monthly meetings of JWG.

    2. Invitee members: Other agencies having peripheral role across Inland waterway logistics chain and may be responsible for a specific non-recurring intervention like new connecting road, traffic management etc. Ministry of Shipping or JWG may invite these agencies to participate in monthly meetings on “as-needed” basis. Examples of such agencies include:

  • Dhaka Transport Coordination Authority
  • Roads and Highways Department
  • Trucking Companies
  • Carrying and Forwarding Agents / Custom Brokers
  • Maritime Universities
  • The Joint Working group meet atleast once a month and will be further supported by program coordination unit for IWT sector, proposed to be setup under Ministry of Shipping.

    It is imperative that the working group is sufficiently empowered to ensure participation by various stakeholders and effective coordination among its constituent members. Thus, the proposed joint working group should ideally be headed by suitably high ranking official, reporting directly to Secretary, Ministry of Shipping. Lastly, JWG will be an advisory and monitoring body. It would not be a decision making authority on behalf of its members.