Private sector’s foreign debt down by over $1b
The private sector’s foreign debt decreased by 4.3 per cent, or more than $1 billion, in the second quarter of the current fiscal year following Bangladesh Bank’s strict measures to control imports. By the end of December 2022, the country’s total private sector foreign debt amounted to $24.1 billion while it was $25.4 billion earlier in September. The private sector foreign debt saw a gradual increase in each quarter since December 2020 and stood at $25.95 billion in June 2022. Following the start of the Russia-Ukraine war in February last year, prices of various products increased. As a result, Bangladesh’s import costs rose, which put pressure on the country’s foreign currency reserve. mid this, the central bank imposed various restrictions on the import of non-essential products in May last year. Of the total private sector foreign debt, short term buyers’ credit decreased by $626 million and stood at $9.56 billion in December last year while it was $10.19 billion in September.
BB plans 75pc cashless transaction by 2027
Bangladesh Bank (BB) governor Abdur Rouf Talukder on Sunday said the central bank will take various measures to make 75 per cent of the country’s overall transaction cashless by 2027. The governor termed cashless transactions a key advancement that would largely contribute to the growth of economic activities in the coming days in the era of highly digitilised world. “We’re taking steps to promote cashless transaction here. More efforts will be made in coming days because we want to reach the target of making 75 per cent of the transactions cashless by 2027,” the BB governor shared the plan while speaking at a Memorandum of Under-standing (MoU) signing ceremony with Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA) at BB headquarters, BB sources said. Alongside the BB, BIDA signed the agreement with three conventional banks — Agrani Bank Limited, Commercial Bank of Ceylon PLC and Mutual Trust Bank Limited — during the signing ceremony. Under the deals, a total of 12 services will be added gradually to the BIDA-operated OSS (one stop service) portal. The central bank governor said many services like fund disbursement of free finance and refinance of other banks with the Bangladesh Bank have been brought under Real-Time Gross Settlement (RTGS).
BAB, BIA place budget proposals
Bangladesh Association of Banks (BAB) has placed a set of proposals to the National Board of Revenue (NBR) for inclusion in the fiscal budget 2023-24. The proposals include requests to permit 1.0-per cent loan-loss provision and CSR activities as “allowable expenditure” in the next fiscal layout. The association of private sector commercial banks also proposed restructuring of the existing individual tax rates, by dividing the rates into five slabs from Tk 0.5 million to Tk 3.5 million and above. “Banks spend a lot of money to recover bad loans including legal battle, sometimes it incurs more than 1 per cent and it takes from our profit, so please consider this as allowable expenditure,” said Nizam Chowdhury, Chairman of NRB Global Bank Ltd, at a pre-budget consultation meeting at the NBR head office in the city on Sunday.
Local and Global Stock Indices *
|Index Name||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|↑ 169.39||↑ 0.50%|
|FTSE100||$ 7,882.45 ||↓ 28.70 ||↓ 0.36%|
|Nikkei 225||$ 27,388.89||↓ 282.09||↓ 1.02%|
World Commodities *
|Commodity||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|Crude Oil (WTI)||$78.79 ||↓ 0.93||↓ 1.17%|
|Crude Oil (Brent)||$85.48||↓ 0.91||↓ 1.05%|
|Gold Spot||$1,858.98||↓ 6.59||↓ 0.35%|
Major Currencies Exchange Rates Movement in Last Seven Days *
|USD 1||BDT 106.6500||BDT 107.0000|
*World Commodities & Local and Global Stock Indices data are taken from bloomberg.com<
* Exchange Rates are taken from BB website, as on latest update.<