BB doubles limit for inward remittances sans declaration
In order to facilitate inward remittances, the Bangladesh Bank has increased the limit for Bangladeshi nationals to bring in their service income without declaration from $10,000 to $20,000. This means Bangladeshi nationals working abroad can now send up to $20,000 or its equivalent without requiring a declaration, according to a central bank circular issued on Wednesday. Md Mezbaul Haque, the spokesperson for the central bank, explained that the new policy will benefit various professionals, including freelancers, IT service providers, scholars, consultants, and researchers who earn money from abroad. Mezbaul, also an executive director of the Bangladesh Bank, commented that the central bank has taken this step to increase foreign currency inflows. Md Shaheen Iqbal, deputy managing director and the head of Treasury and Financial Institutions at Brac Bank, told TBS, “As a result of the central bank’s new policy, freelancers and those who earn remittances through service exports will benefit. I think it will have a positive impact on inward remittances.”
IT export surges despite global economic crisis
Information technology exports from Bangladesh shot up 36 per cent in the first half of the current financial year, beating expectations of industry players as the local IT industry showed resilience against the global economic turmoil. IT companies brought home $282.77 million in the July-December period of 2022-23, up from $208.09 million in the identical half of 2021-22, data from the Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) showed. The higher earnings were driven by the shipment of computer data-processing and hosting services, which cover most business process outsourcing and IT-enabled services. The shipment of computer data processing and hosting services rose to $233.55 million in the six months to December from $154.82 million a year earlier. Local entrepreneurs are receiving a good number of outsourcing orders for back-office operations, image processing, graphic design, animation, data entry, accounting and legal process outsourcing, and data analytics, according to industry people. IT export growth has been phenomenal since the middle of last year after businesses around the world reopened following the improvement in the Covid-19 situation. In the last financial year, IT exports from Bangladesh crossed a major mark after local firms and freelancers earned more than half a billion US dollars for the first time. Local IT companies saw their export earnings shoot up 95 per cent year-on-year to $592.06 million in FY22.
Indian businesses keen to invest in economic zones
Business leaders of the Bengal Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) of Kolkata in India have expressed their interest in investing in Bangladesh’s economic zones in various sectors including manufacturing and engineering, power and information technology (IT), a release said. A 20-member BCCI delegation is now in Bangladesh on a 5-day visit to explore investment areas here. Other areas in which Indian businesses showed interest to invest are– information technology enabled services (ITES), education and skill development, shipping and logistics and agriculture.