AIIB to review projects for quicker execution
The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), new-generation development financier, is set to review Bangladesh projects shortly for speeding up execution by removing bottlenecks. Officials said Monday the Economic Relations Division (ERD) would arrange the tripartite meeting where project directors and relevant line-ministry officials for the AIIB-funded ongoing and proposed projects will be present.AIIB has recently emerged as one of the key development partners of Bangladesh as it has so far confirmed a total of US$560 million worth of assistance during January-August period of this calendar year 2021 for the country’s different development projects.The AIIB had recently confirmed US$260 million in loan for building Kewatkhali Bridge in Mymensingh. It also approved a $300-million loan in February this year for Bangladesh government for financing the COVID-19 Emergency and Crisis Response Facility project. The loan is being utilized for executing government-announced stimulus package for cottage, micro, small and medium enterprises (CMSMEs). Earlier in 2020, the lender also signed nearly $1.0 billion worth of aid deals with Bangladesh government for several projects. Furthermore, the AIIB has proposed providing another $900 million worth of aid for three separate projects and programmes in Bangladesh within this calendar year.
EBL’s net profit grows 55pc amid pandemic
Eastern Bank Limited (EBL) has registered 55-per cent growth in net profit in the first half (H1) of this calendar year amidst the Covid-19 pandemic. This growth has been ascribed to efficient management of its balance sheet complying with all the key regulatory requirements of liquidity. The bank’s operating profit grew over 31 per cent to Tk 4.88 billion during the January-June period of 2021 from Tk 3.71 billion in the same period last year. In the meantime, its operating income rose more than 18 percent to Tk 8.32 billion from Tk 7.03 billion. Net interest income (NII), the core component of operating income of a bank, of this lender grew 21 per cent in H1 of 2021 over that of H1 in 2020.However, EBL’s net profit, officially known as profit after tax, jumped nearly 55 per cent to Tk 2.44 billion in H1 of 2021 despite a lower demand for credit due to Covid-19.It was 6.40-percentage point lower than the Bangladesh Bank (BB)’s target of 14.80 per cent for the second half of fiscal year 2020-21.On the other hand, deficit net operating cash flow of the EBL dropped by over 23 per cent or Tk 2.71 billion to Tk 8.83 billion in H1 of 2021 from Tk 11.54 billion in the same period of 2020.The second-generation PCB maintained liquidity coverage ratio at 143.10 per cent against minimum requirement at 100 per cent in H1 of 2021 while the NSFR was 94.30 per cent instead of 100 per cent.
Revenue receipts rise slightly
Revenue collection grew marginally in July owing to the slowdown in business activities in the face of the government’s restrictions to combat the coronavirus spread. Provisional data from the National Board of Revenue (NBR) shows that it logged Tk 15,354 crore in taxes in July this fiscal year, up 4 per cent year-on-year from Tk 14,755 crore the previous year.The tax authority’s collection in July, the first month of the fiscal year, was Tk 5,613 crore short from its target.Income tax collection went up 15 per cent year-on-year to Tk 4,732 crore in July.Collection of VAT, the biggest source of revenue for the state, rose 1.3 per cent year-on-year to Tk 5,697 crore in July from Tk 5,620 crore a year ago.In July, customs officials logged Tk 4,925 crore, down 2 per cent year-on-year from Tk 5,015 crore the previous year, data from the NBR showed.
Mercantile Bank opens 25 new agent banking outlets
Mercantile Bank Limited launched 25 new ‘Agent Banking’ outlets across the country to provide basic banking services to the unbanked population of the country. The bank’s Managing Director & CEO, Md. Quamrul Islam Chowdhury, inaugurated the 25 ‘Agent Banking’ outlets virtually as the chief guest recently.Customer can enjoy any banking services like opening different A/Cs and deposit schemes or cash deposit, withdrawal, transfer and remittance easily through Biometric Authentication.