Bangladesh, India and Nepal finalise MoU to boost trade, connectivity
South Asian neighbours Bangladesh, India, and Nepal have finalised a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for implementing the long-awaited Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal (BBIN) Motor Vehicles Agreement (MVA). The BBIN connectivity project is aimed to boost regional trade and connectivity, reports Hindustan Times. This initiative was conceived after the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) failed to agree on a regional motor vehicles agreement during a summit in Nepal in 2014. The BBIN project suffered a setback in 2017 when Bhutan temporarily opted out of it after being unable to get parliamentary approval for the MVA. The BBIN Motor Vehicle Agreement for the Regulation of Passenger, Personal and Cargo Vehicular Traffic between the four countries was signed during a transport ministers’ meeting in Thimpu on June 15, 2015. Bhutan had earlier given its consent for the entry into force of the MVA among the other 3 countries, without any obligation to itself, pending the completion of internal procedures for ratifying the agreement.
Current account deficit hits all-time high
Bangladesh’s current account deficit hit an all-time high of $10 billion in just the first seven months of the ongoing fiscal year due to the escalation of trade deficit and dwindling remittances. The large shortfall in the current account will only widen further because of the ongoing pressure on the foreign exchange reserve and exchange rate between the US dollar and taka. The previous highest deficit in the current account was $9.56 billion in FY 2017-18, data from Bangladesh Bank showed. The deficit was $4.57 billion last fiscal year. A current account deficit occurs when the total value of goods and services a country imports exceeds the total value of goods and services it exports. The increasing trend of trade deficit, which stood at nearly $18.7 billion between the months of July and January in FY2021-22, are one of the main reasons for the shortfall in the current account, said Mustafizur Rahman, a distinguished fellow of the Centre for Policy Dialogue.
Savings certificate sales rise 35% in Jan
Customers bought savings certificates worth Tk9,966 crore in January, which was Tk7,362 crore in the previous month. In January this year, both sale of savings certificates and the government’s net debt increased about 35.37% compared to the previous month. Customers bought savings certificates worth Tk9,966 crore in January, which was Tk7,362 crore in December 2021.
Local and Global Stock Indices *
|Index Name||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|↓ 184.74||↓ 0.56 %|
|FTSE100||$ 6,964.11||↑ 4.63||↑ 0.07 %|
|Nikkei 225||$ 24,868.80||↑ 77.85||↑ 0.31 %|
World Commodities *
|Commodity||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|Crude Oil (WTI)||$ 126.31||↑ 2.61||↑ 2.11 %|
|Crude Oil (Brent)||$ 131.40||↑ 3.42||↑ 2.67 %|
|Gold Spot||$ 2,055.78||↑ 5.02||↑ 0.24 %|
Major Currencies Exchange Rates Movement in Last Seven Days *
|USD 1||BDT 86.00|
|GBP 1||BDT 112.7116|
|EUR 1||BDT 93.3616|
*World Commodities & Local and Global Stock Indices data are taken from bloomberg.com<
* Exchange Rates are taken from BB website, as on latest update.<