This post contains one of the cloze tests asked in English section In India Post Payments Bank Scale I Officer Prelim Exam held on 8th January, 2017.
“SQUEEGEE merchants of the seas”: that is the nickname shipping companies have (1) ________ on the pilots who guide ships into Brazilian ports. Their legal monopoly and unregulated fees place them (2) _________ the country’s highest earners: 150,000 reais ($73,500) a month, estimates the shipowners’ association. It costs twice the OECD average to import a container to Brazil, says the World Bank—and since that (3) ____ bribes and fees for go-betweens, the true figure is surely greater. Lack of upkeep and investment add to the (4) ______.
Brazil’s government has (5) _____ up to the urgent (6) _____ to improve the country’s infrastructure. It is auctioning road, railway and airport concessions. Last month it added ports to the list, promising to spend 54 billion reais to expand and dredge public ports and to improve landside access over the next five years.
Operating contracts for port terminals that have (7) _____ will be put out for tender, rather than rolled over. Contracts will go to whomever can ship the largest volume at the lowest price. Private ports will be able to (8) _____ with public ones (only companies with enough cargo to merit a dedicated port can build their own ports now). The government wants to soften the pilots’ monopoly by training more of them.
Fixing the ports matters if Brazil is to (9) _____ anaemic growth. Agriculture is one of the few bits of the economy still doing well. But high transport costs for farmers’ exports are (10)_____ their profits.
- A) put
- A) among
- A) includes
- A) volume
- A) grown
- A) require
- A) expired
- A) fought
- A) upgrade
- A) eroding