Chittagong city is located towards the south-east of the Capital city of Dhaka which is around 200 kilometers from the capital city.
Chittagong is the largest port city in Bangladesh, and also serves as the commercial capital of Bangladesh.
In addition, Chittagong also has the largest inland port in Bangladesh, which is known as Chittagong Port.
This makes Chittagong an excellent city for a freight forwarder looking to setup an office in a strategic location. As a matter of fact, most large industries in Bangladesh that export and import all sorts of goods are situated in Chittagong.
Some of the medium and heavy industries located in Chittagong operate in the garments, steel mill, and oil refinery sectors. Furthermore, Chittagong has an interconnected transportation network of rail, road, and water to transport goods to the Inland Container Depot (ICD) located in Dhaka.
Chittagong is situated on the bank of the river Kharnaphuli, where the river meets the Bay of Bengal.
Chittagong is a Hilly City surrounded by Karnaphully River and Bay of
Bengal from different sides contributing the contemporary urban growth. Chittagong is home to more than 2.5 million people. However, Chittagong is not all about trade; the city is also known for its natural beauties.
Notable features of Chittagong include the Patenga beach, Butterfly Park, Zia Memorial Museum, among others. The intersecting of commerce and natural beauty, make Chittagong an active seaport with the soothing quiet of a charming hill town. In yester years Europeans, mainly Dutch and Portuguese visited Chittagong for trade, commerce, and for holidays.
Chittagong shipping – cargo information
Important shipping/ cargo information valuable to freight forwarders include the following.
First, in the 2014-15 financial year, to CPA data indicated that the Chittagong Port handled 54.78 million metric tons (MMT) of shipments. For the last five years, total shipments grew at 5.43 % per annum. The Chittagong Port can handle container vessels that carry loads of around 2,500 to 3,000 Twenty-foot Equivalent Units.
There are 16 private bonded off dock services; 37 types of commodities are authorized through these private services.
In recent years this number has continued to grow as freight forwarders setup their businesses in Chittagong. However, this recent spurt in growth of both people and ocean carriers has led to congestion.
The acute congestion in Chittagong port has resulted from the combined impact of recent labor issues tied to cargo lightering operations. In addition, the port faces congestions due to infrastructure bottlenecks, limited yard space and equipment shortages that lead to long delays. Perhaps one way to decongest is to promote effective use of freight forwarding operations.
Most importantly, the development of Bangladesh is greatly intertwined with the development of Chittagong. As such, various measures have been put under the Chittagong Development Authority (CDA) to ensure Chittagong develops into a sustainable city that meets future needs. In fact, the recently announced direct shipping services between India and Bangladesh will eliminate the cross-border freight through Singapore, reduce shopping delays and reduce the cost for freight forwarders.