Banks cut back on loan write-off
Loans written off by banks declined sharply in the first quarter of this year as the lenders’ capacity to keep 100 per cent provisioning against their delinquent assets has decreased because of the slowdown in their business. Usually, loans are written off when they are entirely provisioned and there is no realistic prospect of recovering them. These loans are shifted to off-balance sheet records.Between January and March, loans amounting to Tk 101 crore were written off, down 87.35 per cent from a quarter earlier, according to data from Bangladesh Bank. Banks, however, wrote off only Tk 33 crore in the first three months of last year.Banks have to provide corporate tax from the operating profit before calculating the required provisioning against default and unclassified loans. This means lenders have to set aside provisioning after providing tax to the government exchequer. As per Bangladesh Bank regulations, banks have to keep a provisioning of 0.25 per cent to 5 per cent for unclassified loans. They have to maintain 20 per cent for default loans of substandard category, 50 per cent for the doubtful category and 100 per cent for the bad or loss category.Non-performing loans (NPLs) in the country’s banking sector stood at Tk 95,085 crore in March, up 7.1 per cent from three months earlier and 2.8 per cent year-on-year.Default loans amounting to Tk 970 crore were removed from the balance sheets last year, down 63 per cent year-on-year. A total of Tk 57,122 crore has been written off since the facility was introduced in January 2003.
City Bank secures $30m foreign fund
CDC Group, the development finance institution and impact investor of the United Kingdom, has extended a trade finance loan of $30 million to City Bank. The private commercial bank recently signed an agreement with CDC Group to secure the fund.CDC’s investment will enable City Bank to extend foreign currency trade credit to local lenders, importers and exporters and is expected to generate up to $100 million in additional trade every year. UPAS stands for Usance Payable at Sight. UPAS letter of credit is a usance LC where payment is made on a sight basis to the exporter, but the payment of the buyer will be made to the issuing bank at the usance term.The bank will assist businesses in meeting exporters’ requirements of payment at sight and clients’ needs for timely goods receipt while enhancing overall competitiveness in international commercial activities.
BIDA OSS to offer 14 more services
The Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA) is set to integrate 14 more services of five public and private organisations into its online one-stop service (OSS) to further facilitate business operations.The service providing organisations are the Department of Immigration and Passport (DIP), Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Dhaka (MCCI), City Bank Limited, Directorate of Factory and Establishment Inspection (DIFE), and Export Promotion Bureau (EPB).The BIDA has already signed MoUs with 25 organisations. As a result, a total of 47 services of 15 agencies are now being provided through its OSS.
Ctg Customs target to earn 11% of national budget in revenue this year
Chattogram Customs House, the country’s largest customs station, has set an ambitious revenue target of Tk65,435 crore for the current fiscal year, which constitutes nearly 11% of this year’s national budget. The revised target for the last financial year was Tk64,303.60 crore. The customs house authorities say that despite the pandemic, more than 23% growth was achieved in the just concluded financial year, relative to the previous year. This is the second highest growth record of the customs house in the last 26 years. In fiscal 2007-2008, it achieved a 30% growth in revenue compared to the preceding year.According to sources at the customs house, tax and duties evasion will come down further with the e-payment system already introduced.They collected Tk51,576.96 crore against a target of 64,303.60 crore. The revenue collected a year ago was Tk41,854 crore. The highest monthly revenue –-Tk6,743.09 crore –– was collected in June of the last financial year against a target of Tk5,042.42 crore.A review of the revenue target figures show that the target for fiscal 2020-21 increased by Tk6,005.6 crore compared to the previous fiscal year. In fiscal 2019-20, the target saw an increase of Tk3,965 crore.