World Bank to give $202m loan for food storage facility
The World Bank would provide US$202 million worth of loans for improving Bangladesh’s food storage facility, officials said on Monday. To this effect, the Washington-based lender signed a loan agreement with Economic Relations Division (ERD) in Dhaka on the day. WB country director in Bangladesh Mercy Miyang Tembon and ERD secretary Fatema Yeashmin signed the deal. Under the $202 million funds, Directorate of Food would build eight steel-structure modern food silos — six for rice and two for wheat storage. The total capacity of the eight silos will be 0.53 million tonnes of grains. Besides, the Directorate will distribute 0.5 million household silos among 0.5 million families across the country.Bangladesh is one of the self-sufficient countries in food in the globe where food grains are needed to hoard for fulfilling demands round the year. The maturity of the Washington-based global lender’s $202 million loan is 30 years with a 5-year grace period. Bangladesh will have to pay 2.0 per cent interest and 0.5 per cent commitment fees for the loan during the maturity period.
Stocks on upward curve after five-day fall
The benchmark index of the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) has bounced back from a decline spanning five consecutive days. The DSEX rose 24.50 points, or 0.50 per cent, to 4,902.15 yesterday. Many investors are buying their stocks of preference at lucrative prices due to the market slump, according to a stock broker. The index rose 1.28 per cent over the past three days following a 1.92 per cent decline over the previous five, DSE data shows.Turnover, an important indicator of the market, rose 19.33 per cent to Tk 784 crore compared to that of the previous trading day. Beximco Pharmaceuticals was traded the most amounting to Tk 34 crore followed by Beximco Limited, Provati Insurance, Continental Insurance and Bangladesh Submarine Cables. Savar Refractories shed the most, dropping 8.74 per cent followed by Zahintex Industries, Keya Cosmetics, Sunlife Insurance and Progressive Life Insurance. Of the total 356 companies to have witnessed trade, 164 advanced, 128 declined and 64 remained unchanged. The port city bourse also rose yesterday, by 62.73 points or 0.74 per cent, to 8,435.38. Of the 253 companies listed with Chattogram Stock Exchange, 111 rose, 96 dropped and 46 remained unchanged..
Big borrowers gain, SMEs still in pain
They were the hardest hit when the coronavirus pandemic struck the country in March, but the implementation of the stimulus packages the government unveiled for small and medium enterprises (SMEs), farmers and low-income groups more than six months ago has been slow because of the reluctance of banks. In contrast, disbursement from the stimulus package meant for large industries and the service sector was faster.Soon after the deadly virus arrived on the shores of the country, the government and the central bank rolled out 19 stimulus packages worth Tk 106,117 crore to tackle the economic fallout brought on by the pandemic. Banks have been given the responsibility to distribute more than Tk 80,000 crore from the stimulus packages in the form of soft loans.For instance, 81.87 per cent of the Tk 33,000-crore package for large industries and the service sector was approved by lenders as of October 6. The whole fund of the package may be disbursed by this month, a Bangladesh Bank official said. Similarly, as much as 84 per cent of the Export Development Fund, which rose to $5 billion from $3.5 billion, was disbursed since October 5.Banks disbursed about Tk 5,882 crore among 26,664 borrowers since September under the stimulus package worth Tk 20,000 crore dedicated for the SME sector, which is considered the backbone of the economy.Banks approved 44.43 per cent of the Tk 3,000 crore stimulus package for the low-income professionals, marginal farmers and micro-enterprises. The disbursement from the package would have increased if state lenders had taken timely initiatives.
GP’s net profit makes strong recovery
Grameenphone has made a strong recovery from the coronavirus pandemic as its net profit rose 22 per cent to Tk 890 crore in the third quarter, benefiting from the ongoing economic revival. The net profit after tax also advanced by the same margin from the second quarter of 2020, data from the largest mobile phone operator showed yesterday.The profit margin rose by 5.1 percentage points to 25 per cent in the July-September quarter, which was 19.90 per cent in the third quarter last year and 22 per cent in the April-June quarter this year.GP reported revenue of Tk 3,560 crore for the third quarter, down 2.8 per cent year-on-year. The operator took home Tk 10,480 crore in the first nine months of the year, again a decline of 2.5 per cent. The net profit after tax totaled Tk 2,690 crore and the EPS stood at Tk 19.89 as of September this year. The operator ended the quarter with 7.76 crore customers, up 2.5 per cent from 7.57 crore in September last year. Of its customers, 54.1 per cent, or 4.2 crore, use internet.In the third quarter, the carrier invested Tk 320 crore for network coverage, adding 1,070 new 4G sites to its network. The total number of sites now stands at 16,481.
NCC Bank signs deal with NRBC Bank
NCC Bank signed a foreign remittance drawing agreement with NRBC Bank at its Head Office on Sunday. Khondoker Nayeemul Kabir, Managing Director & CEO (C.C.) of NCC Bank, and Md. Mukhter Hossain, Managing Director & CEO of NRBC Bank, signed the agreement on behalf of their respective organisations. M. Shamsul Arefin, Deputy Managing Director of NCC Bank was also present on the occasion. Under this agreement, NRBC Bank will be able to pay the foreign remittance as sub-representative of NCC Bank from its affiliated MTOs.