Monday, 17 June 2019

Maungdaw, Arakan State: Traders from Maungdaw are facing increased difficulties in transferring their goods from Buthidaung to Maungdaw, said a busnessman from Maungdaw.

Goods which come from Akyab are held over at Buthidaung on their way to Maungdaw. The goods are inspected by customs and security personnel from Buthidaung, and then carried towards Maungdaw on trucks, the businessman said.

Since the time of former Prime Minister Lt. Gen Khin Nyunt, most goods have been transported by an agent named Soe Win. Soe Win is believed to have been an aide of Military Intelligence (MI). Now he wants to control the entire business of transport, according to a trader from Maungdaw.

Soe Win now has eight trucks, and he does not want to allow the transport of goods with other trucks whose operators charge less for transportation than the Soe Win Transport Company, the trader said.

Ran Naing, deputy director of the Border Trade Association, led a group of police personnel and some other officials in setting up a check-point at mile five on the Maungdaw-Buthidaung highway. The officials checked only the trucks which did not belong to Soe Win, the trader said.

“We are only carrying goods that have already been checked by customs and security personnel in Buthidaung and then cleared to be carried on to Maungdaw, but now we are facing another check-point at mile five under the supervision of the Border Trade Association,” said a representative of a local transport company.

“The trucks of Soe Win are cleared without being checked.”

“Only goods from local businessmen who are carrying items from Buthidaung to Maungdaw to sell in Maungdaw to earn our survival are being checked and seized at this check-point,” said a local businessman.

“With this type of checking, we are losing our capital and our families are facing hardship to survive. The officers are not even trying to stop goods that may be illegal if they are in Soe Win’s trucks.”