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Govt recasts digital commerce cell

  • Staff Correspondent
  • 15 October, 2021 12:00 AM
  • Print news
Govt recasts digital commerce cell

The government has re-organized the digital commerce cell under the ministry of commerce to address the growing unrest in the e-commerce sector.

The body will oversee the whole activities of the e-commerce industry, a sector rattled by some recent scams mainly due to lack of central monitoring from the government.

The cell will also formulate a much-talked-about policy for the e-commerce sector, said a member of the cell.

“The digital commerce cell is shifted to import and internal trade (IIT) wing of the ministry from World Trade Organization (WTO) cell through issuing a notification on Wednesday,” Additional Secretary AHM Shafiquzzaman, head of IIT wing, told the Daily Sun on Thursday.

He informed that the official announcement of the reform will be announced next Monday after a ministerial meeting on e-commerce. Commerce Ministry deputy secretary Mohammad Sayed Ali and commerce consultant Mohammad Ziaur Rahman will also be included in the digital commerce cell.

There is no dedicated manpower for the digital commerce cell of the ministry, resulting in widespread criticism.

WTO Cell head Hafizur Rahman, an additional secretary, led the digital commerce cell till October 13 as additional duty since the introduction of Digital Commerce Policy in 2018.  Earlier on Tuesday, the commerce ministry formed a 16-member committee as per instructions of the cabinet division.

The law informant agencies have found allegations against over 50 e-commerce companies including fraudulence and money laundering as well.

The commerce ministry continued forming committees and sub-committees to address problems in the e-commerce sectors.  Despite its attempts, more e-commerce scams continued to unfold over the last few months.

On September 27, the commerce ministry formed a 16-member committee to restore discipline in the e-commerce sector. It constituted a nine-member sub-committee on October 5, asking it to recommend whether a new law is needed to streamline the rogue e-commerce companies. The body has been instructed to hand in its proposals by a month.