Govt moves to use Surplus Funds of State Organisations
The government yesterday placed a bill in parliament with a view to bringing the surplus money held by 61 state agencies to the national exchequer and utilising the funds to implement development projects. Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal placed the bill titled “Deposition of Surplus Money of Self-Governed Agencies including Autonomous, Semi-Autonomous and Statutory Government Authorities and Public Non-Financial Corporations to the National Exchequer Bill 2020”. The bill was sent to the parliamentary standing committee on finance to examine and report back to the house within seven days. The surplus funds will be deposited to the national exchequer after keeping aside the operational cost, additional 25 percent of the operational cost as emergency funds, money for general provident fund and pension, according to the bill. The respective organisation can estimate its operational cost. The government has undertaken many development projects and only regular revenue incomes is not enough to bankroll them. So, the government utilises the fund for the development projects. The draft law was approved by the cabinet in early September, when the cabinet secretary said state-owned autonomous organisations held Tk 212,100 crore in deposit in banks as of May last year. They held Tk 218,839 crore at banks until June 30 last year, according to finance ministry statistics. The cabinet decision, however, evoked reaction from bankers, who fear the law would hit the cash-starved banking sector hard. The ongoing liquidity crisis would worsen if the government transfers the money from banks to the national exchequer, they said, adding that the move to bring down the interest rate to single digit is likely to face hurdle due to the initiative.
BB makes easier Digital Marketing Payment
Bangladesh’s e-commerce sector has received a major boost after the central bank opened up an opportunity for them to make payment to social media giants for online marketing. The move will make all international bill payments for online campaigns transparent and boost earnings for the country as local companies would transfer the money through legal channels instead of exploring other routes. This is the first of its kind initiative aimed at paying the bills for digital marketing on social media platforms such as Facebook and Google to their accounts from Bangladesh, Syed Almas Kabir, president of the Bangladesh Association of Software and Information Services (BASIS). Before the move, BASIS members could only remit foreign currency abroad under a special permission using banking channel to bear the expenses of importing licenced software, payment bills for hosting service and domain hosting. On Monday, the central bank also raised the annual ceiling to $40,000 from $30,000 to meet the actual expenses of IT and IT-enabled services. The Foreign Exchange Policy Department of the central bank issued the circular to this effect, allowing authorised dealers to remit the amount through international cards on behalf of IT or software firms who are members of the BASIS. According to the circular, business houses can top-up $8,000 instead of $6,000 on their international payment cards at one go. The decision came into effect immediately. Members of the BASIS can get the two cards from Brac Bank and EBL. The central bank first issued the cards in 2012 with a limit of $10,000 a year. Later, the limit has increased four times. $40,000 is not a small amount, but for big companies like us this amount is not huge. Every year, according to market sources, social media giants like Facebook, Google, Imo, Viber, WhatsApp and Skype earn about Tk 2,000 crore from Bangladesh and most of the funds are channeled through illegal ways. The BASIS had proposed the central bank increase the limit to $55,000, but the BB has raised it to $40,000. The e-CAB has about 1,000 members. There are about 20,000 e-commerce and Facebook-based entities that are running digital businesses and need to run digital marketing.
World-class Shipyard near Payra by 2026
The local shipbuilding industry has potential amid a growing demand for vessels globally. Bangladesh Steel and Engineering Corporation (BSEC) and Gentium-Damen Consortium Group inked the deal on a feasibility study on the establishment of a world-class shipyard near Payra port in Patuakhali. The consortium comprises Damen Group of the Netherlands and Gentium Solutions of Australia. BSEC secretary Md Abul Khayer Sardar, Damen Group area director (Asia) Roland Briene and Gentium Solutions Group (Singapore) co-chairman Ikthedar Hassan Murad signed the MoU. Industries secretary Abdul Halim and Dutch Embassy deputy head of mission in Dhaka Jeroen Steeghs, among others, attended the programme. Bangladesh exports ships and other floating structures to countries like Denmark, Germany, Ecuador and Finland. Quoting a reference from a global research agency, Mr Humayun said the market for ocean-faring vessels would grow to $400 billion per year. The proposed shipyard will help Bangladesh strengthen its foothold in the global shipbuilding market. It will be built on 105 acres of land aiming to meet the growing demand for seafaring ships. With an investment of $1.0 billion, the shipyard will be operational in 2026.
DSEX plummets to 4,036.23
The Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) broad index – DSEX – witnessed another sharp loss on Tuesday, and came down to almost 4,000-point level after losing 423 points in eight sessions. Like the previous sessions, losers took heavy control on gainers on the day amid liquidity ‘shortage’ and investors’ ‘lack of confidence’ on the country’s capital market. After daylong selling frenzy, the DSE core index lost 2.11 per cent or 87.24 points to close at 4,036.23 points, the lowest level since the index settled at 4,014.37 points on May 5, 2015. The DSE market capitalisation also witnessed a major erosion of Tk 274 billion following continuous and sharp price corrections of last eight sessions. Of the large cap companies, the share prices of Grameenphone (GP), British American Tobacco Bangladesh Company, Square Pharmaceuticals, and Renata declined, ranging from 0.63 per cent to 2.57 per cent. On the other hand, the share prices of some companies – United Airways (BD), Beach Hatchery, Imam Button, Tallu Spinning Mills, Zeal Bangla Sugar Mills, and Zahintex Industries – rose, although these companies incurred loss. Of the total 355 issues traded on the DSE on Tuesday, 293 declined, while the share prices of only 23 advanced. On Tuesday, the Chittagong Stock Exchange (CSE) benchmark index CSE All Share Price Index (CASPI) declined 2.18 per cent or 274.74 points to close at 12,295.34. Of the 244 issues traded, 21 advanced, 203 declined, and 20 remained unchanged, and the turnover stood at above Tk 96.99 million on the port-city bourse.
Beximco, Nuvista donate Tk 17.4m to BWWF
Beximco Pharmaceuticals Limited and Nuvista Pharma Limited have contributed Tk 17.4 million to the Bangladesh Workers’ Welfare Foundation (BWWF) Fund. On behalf of the two companies, Head of HR at Beximco Pharmaceuticals MA Arshad Bhuiyan on Tuesday handed over the cheque to the State Minister for Labour and Employment Monnujan Sufian at the latter’s secretariat office in the capital, according to a statement. A total of 160 local and foreign companies have so far contributed to the fund totallingz TK 4.1 billion. Under the amended labour law, profit-earning companies have to contribute five per cent of their net profits to their two participatory welfare funds as well as the government-formed workers’ welfare fund. The ratio of the contribution is 80:10:10, respectively.
IFIC Bank signs MoU with Anwar Landmark
IFIC Bank Ltd and Anwar Landmark Limited signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Monday, said a statement. Under the MOU, the customers of Anwar Landmark can avail IFIC Aamar Bari – Home loan product, of IFIC Bank at exclusive interest rate and processing fees along with other features.
BRAC Bank holds Workshop on Prevention of Money Laundering
BRAC Bank Limited organised a workshop on “Prevention of money laundering and combating financing of terrorism”. A total of 165 officials of Jashore area participated in the day-long workshop held at a city hotel recently. BRAC Bank invests in people’s development through various training programmes to upskill their knowledge and efficiency levels. BRAC Bank Limited organises workshop for awareness on ‘Prevention of money laundering and combating financing of terrorism’ among its officials at different part of the country under the directive of Bangladesh Bank
Local and Global Stock Indices *
|Index Name||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|DSEX||4,036.23948||↓ 87.24||↓ 2.12 %|
|↑ 32.62||↑ 0.11 %|
|FTSE100||7,622.35||↑ 4.75||↑ 0.06 %|
|Nikkei 225||23,914.88||↓ 110.2||↓ 0.46%|
World Commodities *
|Commodity||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|Crude Oil (WTI)||$ 58.07 ||↓ 0.16||↓ 0.27 %|
|Crude Oil (Brent)||$ 64.32||↓ 0.17||↓ 0.26 %|
|Gold Spot||$ 1,551.96||↑ 5.57||↑ 0.36 %|
Major Currencies Exchange Rates Movement in Last Seven Days *
|USD 1||BDT 83.1239|
|GBP 1||BDT 108.044|
|EUR 1||BDT 92.5170|
|INR 1||BDT 1.17281|
*CURRENCIES AND COMMODITIES ARE TAKEN FROM BLOOMBERG.<