Govt’s Tk 5,000cr lifeline for farmers all set
There seems to be finally some light at the end of the tunnel for the agriculture sector as the central bank and agriculture ministry have finalised a Tk 5,000 crore rescue package for farmers, rice millers, producers of all agro-products and owners of dairy farms. Since the countrywide shutdown was announced on March 25 with the view to flattening the curve of coronavirus, farmers have been passing sleepless nights as it essentially ruptured the distribution network for fresh produce tipping them towards a pool of losses. With the hope of pulling them out of the pits, the government has prepared the package, which is due to be announced in a day or two. Along with the farmers, businesses and entrepreneurs of the agriculture sector will be allowed to take loans at 5 per cent interest from the packet, said central bank and agriculture ministry officials involved in drawing up the bailout package. A fresh refinance scheme will be constituted with the Bangladesh Bank’s own funds to implement the package. Banks will take funds from the scheme at 2 per cent interest and disburse them at 5 per cent interest. The borrowers will get the loans as working capital, with repayment duration being 18 months, including a six-month grace period. Besides, the central bank is working on slashing the interest rate on farm loans by 2 percentage points to 7 per cent. The BB has set a farm loan disbursement target of Tk 24,124 crore for fiscal 2019-20. Every bank will have to disburse 2.5 per cent of their total loans per year to farmers.
Pharma companies rule the roost
The country’s capital market was mainly driven by pharmaceuticals and chemicals sector in March following investors’ increased participation in share transactions. On the trading sessions executed between March 8 and March 25, pharmaceutical and chemical companies had the highest contribution up to 77.6 per cent in daily market turnover. Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) executed the last trading session on March 25. On the day, the DSE featured a turnover of above Tk 3.48 billion and the greater portion of this value came from transactions of the shares of pharmaceutical and chemical companies. Listed pharmaceuticals and chemical companies posted a turnover of above Tk 2.7 billion and grabbed 77.6 per cent of the market turnover featured by the DSE on March 25. The banking sector featured the second highest turnover of above Tk 318.2 million, which was 9.1 per cent of the total market turnover posted by the DSE on March 25. On the day, pharmaceutical and chemical companies featured a turnover of above Tk 606.1 million on the DSE. The banking sector posted the second highest turnover of above Tk 208.2 million and grabbed 14.9 per cent of the market turnover on March 24. The pharmaceutical and chemical companies posted a turnover of above Tk 938.2 million on March 23 and captured 36.9 per cent of the market turnover worth above Tk 2.54 billion observed on the DSE. On the day, the fuel & power sector featured the second highest turnover of Tk 316.9 million.
GSK posts ever highest EPS in 2019
GlaxoSmithKline Bangladesh Ltd has posted the ever highest earnings per share in 2019 thanks to closure of its unprofitable pharmaceuticals business in Bangladesh. The UK-based pharmaceuticals giant has reported EPS of Tk 81.83 for the year ended on December 31, 2019, the ever highest in the history of the company that validates the decision to closure the pharmaceuticals business, according to its latest annual report 2019. The GSK, one of the world’s leading research-based pharmaceutical and healthcare companies, shut its medicine manufacturing unit in 2018 after six decades of operation due to incurring huge losses for the five consecutive years before closure. Sensodyne had a bonanza year in 2019, achieving multiple brand and commercial targets. The board of directors of the company has recommended 530 per cent cash dividend for the year ended on December 31, 2019.
Agrani Bank Principal branch’s lockdown withdrawn
Agrani Bank Limited withdrew lockdown of the principal branch of the bank from today (Sunday) as it was imposed after an official tested positive for the novel coronavirus. The authorities of the bank decided to withdraw the lockdown as per the permission of civil surgeon, local thana and Bangladesh Bank as the final PCR lab report of the alleged official came negative. The principal branch, situated on the first floor of the Agrani Bank Bhaban at Motijheel in Dhaka, will continue its normal activities from today (Sunday). The branch was ordered to lockdown from April 09, 2020. The activities of the branch were continued at Amin Court Branch. .
GSK partners with CARE Bangladesh
With the financial support from GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Bangladesh funded HALOW+ (Health Access and Linkage Opportunities for Workers Plus) project, GSK distributed personal protective equipment (PPE), disposable hand gloves, mask, hand sanitizer, liquid soap, hand rubs in Gazipur recently with the support of CARE Bangladesh, health officials, local government officials and community volunteers.
Local and Global Stock Indices *
|Index Name||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|↑ 285.80||↑ 1.22 %|
|FTSE100||5842.66||↑ 164.93||↑ 2.90 %|
|Nikkei 225||19498.50||↑ 152.73||↑ 0.79 %|
World Commodities *
|Commodity||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|Crude Oil (WTI)||$22.76||↓ 2.33||↓ 9.29 %|
|Crude Oil (Brent)||$ 31.48||↓ 1.36||↓ 4.14 %|
|Gold Spot||$1,696.65||↑ 12.92||↑ 0.77 %|
Major Currencies Exchange Rates Movement in Last Seven Days *
|USD 1||BDT 83.0430|
|GBP 1||BDT 103.363|
|EUR 1||BDT 90.7718|
|INR 1||BDT 1.09485|
*CURRENCIES AND COMMODITIES ARE TAKEN FROM BLOOMBERG.<