Govt’s revenue from capital market falls 7.61pc in FY’18
The government’s revenue earnings from the capital market declined 7.61 per cent or Tk 312.70 million in the just concluded fiscal year (FY 2017-18) compared to the previous FY. The earnings declined mainly due to reduced turnover value registered by both the stock exchanges. The government bagged revenue worth more than Tk 3.79 billion from the Dhaka and Chittagong stock exchanges, and Central Depository Bangladesh Limited (CDBL) in FY 2017-18. The revenues come from brokerage commission charge on share transactions, sales and transfer of shares by sponsor-directors, and dividend income. It also comes from maintenance fee of BO (beneficiary owner’s) accounts and corporate tax paid by stock exchanges and the depository organisation-CDBL. According to DSE officials, the government’s revenue declined marginally in FY 2017-18 as the turnover value declined during the period.
NBR nod must for banks to offer double taxation avoidance benefit
National Board of Revenue has asked all banks not to allow double taxation avoidance benefits to any non-resident taxpayers without NBR certificate. International taxation wing of the revenue board has also requested Bangladesh Bank for taking necessary measures so that banks follow the directives. International tax wing of NBR on July 5 wrote two letters to the central bank governor and the managing directors of all scheduled banks. In a letter to the central bank, NBR said that Bangladesh had bilateral agreements on avoidance of double taxation with 33 countries. Taxpayers from the both countries would get some income tax benefits including waiver and reduced tax rate under a bilateral agreement. Generally, any person or organisation responsible for making any payment to a non-resident has to deduct income tax at specified rates, mostly 20 per cent and 30 per cent, on total payment. But the rate varies for taxpayers residing in countries having double taxation agreements with Bangladesh. NBR officials said that all non-resident taxpayers, mainly foreign companies, organisations and individuals of a country having DTA agreement must obtain certificate from NBR on applicability of the benefit.
DSE, CSE end flat with falling turnover
Stocks ended almost flat on Monday as late hours selling pressure wiped most of the early gains. Dealers said the risk-averse investors sold shares in the later part of the session amid ongoing earnings declarations, taking the market in the flat zone. At the end of the session, DSEX, the prime index of the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE), settled at 5,339 points, advancing 3.16 points or 0.05 per cent after losing 22.15 points in the previous day. The DS30 index, comprising blue chips, also advanced 2.08 points or 0.10 per cent to finish at 1,897. However, the DSE Shariah Index saw a fractional loss of 0.51 point to close at 1,265. Turnover, another important indicator of the market, also fell and the total turnover amounted to Tk 8.73 billion on the country’s major bourse against Tk 9.55 billion in the previous day. However, the port city bourse edged lower with its CSE All Share Price Index – CASPI – shedding 4.90 points to settle at 16,447 and the Selective Categories Index – CSCX – losing 8.20 points to finish at 9,947. The CSE traded 11.56 million shares and mutual fund units worth more than Tk 448 million in turnover.
Microcredit gains momentum
The number of microcredit beneficiaries across the country rose significantly in one year to June 2016, according to the Microcredit Regulatory Authority (MRA) data. The total number of loan recipients increased to 23.11 million in June 2016 from 20.35 million in June 2015, the data showed. The number of members of micro-finance institutions (MFIs) increased to 27.511 million at the end of June 2016, up from 26 million a year earlier. The borrowers are becoming less dependent on banks as the MFIs are ensuring their presence across the country, especially in rural areas. The number of MFI branches increased to 16,240 as of June 2016 from 15,609 in 2015. Again, the number of MFI employees increased to 122,335 in June 2016 from 110,781 in June 2015. A total of 707 MFIs are registered with the MRA and 128 got licences on a temporary basis until March 2018.
Current account deficit set to cross record $10b
Bangladesh’s current account deficit is set to cross the $10 billion mark for the first time in history as the country’s capacity to export continues to lag behind its appetite for imports. Between the months of July and April of fiscal 2017-18, the current account deficit stood at $9.37 billion in contrast to $2.21 billion in the negative a year earlier, according to the central bank’s balance of payments data. The deficit to GDP ratio will be about 3.50 percent to 4 percent at the end of last fiscal year. Historically, the ratio hovered between 1 percent and 1.50 percent in a fiscal year, according to the economist. A deficit of $10 billion means the country has already borrowed the same amount from foreign sources. If the trend continues Bangladesh will become an indebted country within the next five years. The country has now capability of settling import payments of maximum five months in contrast to eight months a year ago. Bangladesh Bank has already injected about $2.5 billion into the market to cool down the foreign exchange market. On Sunday, the interbank exchange rate was Tk 83.75 per dollar, up from Tk 80.64 a year earlier, according to central bank statistics. A higher import payment against the lower export earnings was largely responsible for the large trade and current deficit, said Syed Mahbubur Rahman, chairman of the Association of Bankers, Bangladesh. Between July last year and May this year, imports surged 25.52 percent year-on-year whereas exports grew 7.79 percent. “We should give importance to increasing export and remittance to halt the upward trend of current account deficit. Otherwise, the large deficit will further create pressure on the exchange rate of the local currency,” said Rahman.
Cabinet approves e-commerce policy
The Cabinet on Monday approved the National Digital Commerce Policy 2018 with the aim of ensuring safe digital transactions removing mistrust of buyers and purchasers in digital commerce. Earlier this year, the information and communication ministry published a draft on digital commerce policy seeking stakeholders’ comment by May 30, 2018. According to e-Commerce Association of Bangladesh, over 715 businesses are members of e-CAB, which delivered 30,000 products in 2017 and transacted Tk 1,800 crore. In addition, there are 1,000 e-commerce-based sites and 10,000 Facebook pages that run online-based businesses.
Owners offer Tk 6,360 while workers’ rep for Tk 12,020
The garment factory owners’ representative to the minimum wage board for reviewing wages of readymade garment workers on Monday proposed Tk 6,360 as minimum monthly wage while workers’ representative to the board proposed Tk 12,020. In the wage proposal, the owners made an increase of Tk 1,060 from the existing minimum wage of Tk 5,300 which was set almost five years ago. Trade unions in the garment sector rejected both the proposals as ‘inhuman and unjust’ and reiterated their demand for setting Tk 16,000 as minimum wage. In the third meeting of the minimum wage board held at the board’s Topkhana Road office in Dhaka, the owners’ representative to the board proposed Tk 6,360 as minimum wage that included basic pay of Tk 3,600, basic pay’s 40 per cent as house rent, Tk 300 as medical allowance, Tk 240 as travel allowance and Tk 780 as food allowance. They considered many factors, including cost of production, productivity, price of products and inflation, before coming up with the proposal. Proposing Tk 12,020 as minimum wage, workers’ representative to the board Shamsunnahar Bhuiyan said, ‘Although it is not possible for the workers to lead a decent life with the amount, I made the proposal considering the current situation of the country and several sectors’ minimum wages that were set recently.’
GP profit rises 36pc in Apr-Jun
Grameenphone’s net profit rose 36.3 percent year-on-year to Tk 1,080.44 crore in the April-June period, the highest in a single quarter in the operator’s history, helped by an unused portion of tax provisioning as well as growth in voice and data revenue. It had made Tk 640 crore in net profit in the first quarter of 2018. The operator added Tk 290 crore to its actual net profit in the second quarter. GP had set aside the amount as part of its tax provisioning. It, however, did not need to use the sum, said a top executive of the operator. Revenue rose to Tk 3,257.50 crore in the quarter riding on huge data and moderate voice revenue growth, up 0.50 percent from the same quarter a year ago. The remaining from the tax provision helped increase the operator’s earnings per share to Tk 8 for April-June, up from Tk 4.74 in the first quarter. The operator crossed the 20 lakh milestone for 4G subscribers in the quarter. At the end of June, the operator had 6.92 crore active mobile phone subscribers, registering a 5.9 percent growth over 2017. It has 3.45 crore data subscribers, said the statement. In the second quarter, the operator contributed Tk 4,790 crore to the national coffer.
Summit Gazipur 1 Power adds 149MW to national grid
Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission has endorsed an Infozillion BD-Teletech Consortium proposal to charge mobile phone operators along with taking fees from customers for mobile network portability service. The BTRC has already put forward a proposal in this regard to the posts and telecommunications ministry for approval. The MNP service will allow subscribers to change their mobile network (operator) by keeping their existing numbers. Under the BTRC proposal, a mobile phone operator will have to pay Tk 150-170 as charge to Infozillion for receiving each MNP customer from other operators. The charge, however, would be finalised after getting approval from the telecom ministry. On the other hand, the charge to be paid by each customer for changing operator under the MNP service will remain unchanged at Tk 30.
Record govt servants to retire this FY: Benefit payments to cost public exchequer Tk 260b
A record number of public servants are set to go into retirement during the current fiscal year (FY), 2018-19. The government will require an amount estimated at Tk 260.47 billion to meet their pension-related payments. Officials concerned at the Finance Division said nearly 23,000 employees and officials are likely to retire from the government jobs in this FY, ending on June 30, 2019, at the age of 59 years. Usually, around 20,000 government staff members go into retirement a year. The National Pay Scale 2015 has 20 grades, whereas the total number of civil servants is around 1.102 million at present. The officials said the maximum number of employees set to go into retirement belong to the Grade-11. In the meantime, the government has estimated that Tk 260.47 billion will be required to meet the pension-related payments this year. The government in its revised budget for the last FY, 2017-18, allocated Tk 136.86 billion for the purpose. The actual pension payment for FY 2015-16 was Tk 155.12 billion.
Local and Global Stock Indices *
|Index Name||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
World Commodities *
|Commodity||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|Crude Oil (WTI)||$68.08||↓2.55||↓3.61%|
|Crude Oil (Brent)||$72.18||↓2.73||↓3.64%|
Major Currencies Exchange Rates Movement in Last Seven Days *
|USD 1||BDT 83.76|
|GBP 1||BDT 110.93|
|EUR 1||BDT 98.14|
|INR 1||BDT 1.22|
*CURRENCIES AND COMMODITIES ARE TAKEN FROM BLOOMBERG.