Bangladesh
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Unique BINs for e-commerce this month

Every e-commerce and F-commerce company in Bangladesh will soon have to apply for a Unique Business Identification Number (UBIN) from the Digital Commerce Cell (DCC) as the commerce ministry is set to launch the registration from this month.

The commerce ministry sent a report on the final application form and its implementation guidelines to Cabinet Secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam on Tuesday, according to Hafizur Rahman, additional secretary to the commerce ministry.

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"We have not set any specific launch date but it will surely happen this month," Rahman told The Daily Star.

DCC Chief AHM Shafiquzzaman said his organisation would implement the UBIN for registered companies. Every e-commerce and f-commerce company in the country will have to obtain UBINs to ensure responsible business practices as reports recently surfaced regarding fraud by some of these firms.

A hard copy of the application form has been approved and now work is ongoing to digitise it as applicants will have to apply through an online portal to obtain the UBIN, he added.

The DCC will manage the UBIN to prevent any cheating by e-commerce or f-commerce companies. Currently, more than 2,500 e-commerce and nearly three lakh f-commerce companies are operating in Bangladesh.

The DCC has called an important meeting on the e-commerce and f-commerce industry today as the commerce ministry along with other related ministries, departments and agencies have been working to pay back those affected by the irregular activities of some rogue e-commerce firms.

Refunds to these companies are still stuck at Bangladesh Bank's payment gateway though as it awaits vetting by the law ministry.

On July 1 this year, the central bank launched an escrow service payment gateway to stop e-commerce companies from cheating their customers.

So far, some Tk 214 crore has been deposited in the escrow payment gateway for the non-delivery of goods.