April 14, 2024, 8:02 pm

Price hike of construction materials hits housing sector in North

  • Update Time : Sunday, January 28, 2024
  • 51 Time View
The photo shows a pile of construction rods. Photo: Collected

Soaring prices of construction materials breaching dreams of northern people

Swarnomoyee Mostafa Oishy:

Just after few days of the 12th national parliamentary election, the prices of construction materials have started to go up again in the northern region including Bogura and Sirajganj district like other parts of the country.

Meanwhile, the prices of rod based on different company and standard have increased by Tk 5,000 to Tk 10,000. Similarly, the prices of cement, sand and brick have increased alarmingly. The cost of laborers is not lagging behind in the race for rising.

The sources at the Real Estate and Housing Association of Bangladesh (REHAB) said, the rod, which was sold at Tk 80,000 per tonne before the parliamentary polls, is now being sold at Tk 90,000 by rising at Tk 10,000. Best quality of rod is now being sold at Tk 1 lakh against the previous rate at Tk 94,000.

The association leaders also said, at least Tk 35,000 has increased against per tonne of rod in less than two and a half year.

In 2020, a tonne of rod was sold at Tk 64,000, while a tonne of rod was sold at Tk 70,000 in 2021, Tk 94,000 in 2022 and Tk 1.10 lakh in 2023 creating a record in the history. As a result, many people including real estate companies and builders were forced to stop construction works to tackle the expenditures.

Before the national parliament polls, the prices of all construction materials came to ease and per tonne of rod was sold between Tk 80,000 and Tk 85,000. Those, who were involved with the construction works, resumed works again because of getting flexible rate.

Abdul Malek, a resident of Sewzgari in Bogura town told The Daily Sky that, “I was compelled to keep the construction work of my house shut before the election in fear of pre-election violence. I had an expectation that, I shall resume the construction work after election. But unfortunately, the prices of all construction materials have gone up again making me crippled. Now I am seriously disappointed.”

Shafiqur Rahman, a rod trader said, “Import of rod producing raw materials is being hampered for want of dollar. Besides, transportation cost is also taking high due to problem in the Red Sea. This is why, the price is on the rise.”

Seeking anonymity, a senior officer of Public Works Department (PWD) in Bogura said, “Most of the contractors are showing disinterest to complete their construction works due to sudden rising of materials’ prices. Besides, there is apprehension of facing difficulties over new projects.”

“A section of unscrupulous traders are amassing additional money with the hope to be multimillionaire overnight taking the advantage of poor market monitoring,” he blamed.

Barkat Ali, a trader of Bogura’s Satmatha area said, “The price of rod was low before the election. Companies increase the prices at different times showing several pleas. Now, they are showing excuse of gas crisis. Similarly, the brick kiln owners have increased the prices of bricks on the pretext of bad weather (cold wave). They are realizing additional money saying that they can’t dry bricks at their kilns due to lack of sunshine. So, there is shortage of bricks as per demand.”

Insiders said, the season of construction is basically started since November. December and February are the peak time for construction works. Taking the advantage, traders have increased the prices of cement like other materials. The price of cement has increased by at least Tk 20 per sack on the basis of brand. The traders have also brought same excuse of raw material crisis behind the price hike of cement.

Masudur Rahman Milon, President at Bogura Chamber of Commerce and Industry told The Daily sky that, “Many traders can’t import raw materials for rod and cement production as most banks are facing trouble to open LC. It has an impact on flat and apartment business especially in real estate sector. Consequently, the dream of middle income people for housing is going out of reach day by day.”

“The government should take necessary step in this regard in order to the prices of construction materials remain stable. If the government pays attention immediately, the housing sector will be protected,” he urged.

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