Sonali’s operating profits rocket
Sonali Bank’s operating profits soared in 2018 thanks to recovery of huge amounts of bad debts and lending to the call money market. The state-run lender logged in operating profits of Tk 2,058.54 crore, up 72.20 percent from a year earlier, according to the progress report it forwarded to the banking division last week. The bank recovered a total of Tk 3,668 crore from its classified loans, of which the cash recovery was more than Tk 1,000 crore. About Tk 25 crore was recovered from their written off loans amounting to Tk 7,188 crore. Sonali has been following a restricted lending policy over the last few years in line with the central bank instruction due to financial corruption previously. The restricted lending policy has become a blessing as the lender has been enjoying excess liquidity in recent years. Thanks to loan recovery, the bank’s classified loans dropped by Tk 1,997 crore in one year and stood at Tk 11,800 crore at the end of December 2018. A year earlier the bank’s total classified loans stood at Tk 13,797 crore.
Tyre market grows on rising demand
The market size of automotive tyres reached Tk 4,750 crore last year, up from about Tk 4,000 crore in 2017 and Tk 3,000 crore in 2015, according to market players. The commercial vehicle tyre segment dominates the industry with the market size standing at Tk 3,750 crore. At least 1.5 lakh pieces of tyres in the segment were sold in 2018. Besides, 1 lakh pieces of tyres used in private cars were sold last year amounting to Tk 1,000 crore, said Mohammed Shahidul Islam, chairman of HNS, an importer of Korean Hankook tyre brand. In the commercial vehicle tyre segment, the MRF’s market share is 30 percent. Apollo controls 5 percent of the segment, Birla 10 percent, CEAT 3 percent, and Hankook 1 percent. The rest 51 percent is controlled by non-branded Chinese tyres. In the private car tyre segment, the combined share of Japanese brands Yokohama, Bridgestone and Toyo and US brand Dunlop stands at about 70 percent. Thai brand Maxxis owns 20 percent share, Korean brand Hankook 2 percent, and non-branded Chinese tyres the rest 8 percent. There are two types of tyres in terms of manufacturing: bias and radial. And 90 percent owners of commercial vehicles use bias tyres to minimise cost. However, radial tyre is getting popular thanks to its longevity compared to bias tyres, said Amzad Khan Raju, managing director of Shawan International, an importer of Maxxis tyre. The future of the tyre market is bright as the number of cars is increasing at least by 10 percent a year.
Dormitory funding becomes popular among NBFIs
Dormitory financing has become an attractive product for non-bank financial institutions (NBFIs) in recent times as the demand for accommodation keeps increasing rapidly in labour-intensive areas around Dhaka. Another reason that encourages the NBFIs to put their money in small-sized housing is the security of their investment. Market players say the possibility of their investment in such ventures becoming classified is far less than that in other areas. The FIs also opened their outlets in these areas in recent months to accelerate the activities through ensuring regular monitoring of their clients. They are financing in between Tk 3.0 million and Tk 20 million. Under the initiative, small apartments sizing around 800 square feet that would have two rooms will be built in areas adjacent to the capital. A total of 35 NBFIs are operating in the country with total investment standing at Tk 850 billion (85,000 crore). Over 60 per cent of the investment (Tk 480 billion) come from depositors while 45 per cent of the amount are invested in the industrial sector, followed by SMEs (small and medium enterprises), housing, construction and others.
Furniture export sees 40.56pc growth in H1
The export of furniture increased 40.56 per cent to US$ 33.72 million during the first six months (July-December) of the current fiscal year (FY) as compared to the corresponding period of the previous FY. The export of furniture during the first half of the last FY totaled $ 23.99 million, according to the Export Promotion Bureau (EPB), reports BSS. The EPB data showed that the furniture export fetched $ 63.18 million in the last fiscal year while the strategic export target of furniture for the current FY is $ 70 million. Bangladeshi furniture is now being exported to the Middle Eastern countries alongside UK, USA, Japan, Australia, India, Russia and some South-East Asian countries. Higher growth in furniture export has lit the light of hope in boosting overall exports while Bangladesh is also joining the list of highest furniture export-oriented countries. Demanding of the government to reduce import duty on some necessary raw materials to take ahead further this furniture industry. Director General of EPB Abhijit Chowdhury said that the furniture industry got due importance in the 7th Five Year Plan to make furniture as a permanent export item. He also informed that steps have been taken to create new markets abroad for the Bangladeshi furniture.
Subscription of ‘AAML Unit Fund’ begins today
The subscription of ‘AAML Unit Fund’ will begin today (Sunday) and close on February 19, according to a release. The Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC) approved the prospectus of the AAML Unit Fund on October 23, 2018. The initial size of the fund will be Tk 100 million (10 crore). Of the amount, Tk 90 million will be collected through sales of units, while the sponsor will contribute the remaining Tk 10 million. Assurance Asset Management is the sponsor and fund manager of the AAML Unit Fund. Investment Corporation of Bangladesh is the trustee of the fund, while BRAC Bank is the custodian.
Mongla port development work to begin soon
Works on a set of infrastructure development projects aimed at increasing the capacity of Mongla Port, the second largest seaport in the country, is likely to begin in the first quarter of this year. Mongla Port Authority sources said a decision to this effect was made in December last while a technical team from China visited the port. On October 14, 2017, Bangladesh and China signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to develop the port at a cost of around Tk 30 billion. The MoU was signed in presence Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Chinese President Xi Jinping. The projects include construction of four jetties and two yards, a large multistoried garage for car parking, four lanes road, purchasing of 11 survey and tag boats and modern machineries for handling cargoes and containers. The government of India earlier provided an assistance of Tk 62.56 billion for the development of Mongla Port as a first class seaport. Mongla Port has already turned into a profitable and busy port with enhanced foreign ship anchoring, cargo handling and exports and imports in the last nine years.
‘Jobike’ starts operation in city
Bicycle sharing service, Jobike, started its operation in the city on Saturday just one year after its introduction in the tourist city of Cox’s Bazar last January. The country’s first two-wheeler on demand will now be available in Mirpur DOHS (Defense Officers Housing Society) on a pilot basis beginning with 50 bicycles. As bicycle is a very environment friendly means of transportation, this kind of sharing service is very popular in different other countries like China and Singapore. They got extraordinary response from our customers in those three places and that’s why we have moved to the capital and are now targeting to launch the service commercially in other parts of the city within two months. A rider will be charged Tk 1 in Dhaka, the same as Cox’s Bazar. However, on the two university campuses, the service is being offered for Tk 3 for every five minutes. Our plan is to make the service popular within one month in the capital and move for some residential areas like Basundhara. The Jobike application has already been downloaded over 35,000 times and it is increasing every day and on an average each day their bikes are being used about 3,000 times. Currently, 100 bikes are running in Jahangirnagar University, 50 in Cox’s Bazar and another 50 in Chittagong University. However, within this week they will add another 50 bikes in Chittagong University as the demand is very high.
Squash cultivators hopeful about abundant yield in Rangpur
Squash is cultivated at village Char Pallimari, Char Prannath, Char Chatura, Char Rajib, Hasbatkhaon, Gonai Char and some other areas in Kawnia upazila and Mahipur, Char Morneya and many other places of Gangachara upazila in Rangpur. This year vegetable growers under the district geared up the farming of different varieties of vegetables including squash and made vigorous efforts with the optimism to get expected output as well as handsome profit from the sale of their produce. One farmer cultivated squash on 35 decimals of land this season. During last few years he has been getting a satisfactory yield as well as good profit from farming of the vegetable. Satisfactory prices as well as huge demand have encouraged the cultivators to cultivate the vegetable on a large scale. Use of modern technology also enhanced its production in recent years.
Local and Global Stock Indices *
|Index Name||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|Nikkei 225||19,561.96 ||↓452.81||↓2.26%|
World Commodities *
|Commodity||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|Crude Oil (WTI)||$ 47.96||↑0.87||↑1.85%|
|Crude Oil (Brent)||$ 57.06||↑1.11 ||↑1.98%|
|Gold Spot||$ 1,286.05 ||↓8.23||↓0.64%|
Major Currencies Exchange Rates Movement in Last Seven Days *
|USD 1||BDT 83.8374|
|GBP 1||BDT 106.6663|
|EUR 1||BDT 95.5327|
|INR 1||BDT 1.2022|
*CURRENCIES AND COMMODITIES ARE TAKEN FROM BLOOMBERG.</h4