Banks asked to set up FDI help desk at key branches
Bangladesh Bank has instructed the commercial banks to set up FDI help desk at their key branches for boosting foreign direct investment in the country. The BB on Tuesday issued a circular to all banks asking them to set up the help desk at their respective head offices and main branches of authorised dealers in Dhaka and Chittagong. The banks have also been asked to man the desk with competent officials. The central bank has asked the banks to open the FDI help desk within 30 days from the date of issuance of the circular. A BB official said that the central bank had taken the initiative to attract foreign investors through giving required supports from the desk. According to the latest central bank data, the gross inflow of foreign direct investment increased by 13.73 per cent to $2.65 billion in the July-May period of the recently concluded fiscal year 2016-17 from $2.33 billion during the same period of FY16.Besides, the net FDI inflow rose by 27.25 per cent to $1.62 billion in the first 11 months of FY17 from $1.27 billion during the corresponding period of FY16.
Fin min asks BB not to give cash incentives to remitters
Bangladesh Bank is in a quandary about how to give incentives to remittance senders to increase inward remittance as finance minister AMA Muhith has rejected a move to pay cash incentives to non-resident Bangladeshis who send remittance through legal channel. Muhith issued a note to the finance ministry and the central bank on June 4 to find a solution to reduce the service charge on inward remittance which will be remitted through banks, western union, bKash and post office. It is not possible to offer cash incentive to the NRBs as the initiative will create a dual currency exchange rate in the country which was recognised as bonus system during Pakistan period, he said. Against the backdrop of Muhith’s decision, the central bank on Wednesday arranged a discussion with the senior executives of the top 20 remittance-earning banks at its headquarters in the capital.BB executive director Ahmed Jamal presided over the meeting where the banks opined that they did not take any service charge from the NRBs against the money they send home. An insignificant amount of inward remittance is now being remitted through the exchange houses owned by the Bangladeshi banks and citizens, a commercial banker told New Age after the meeting. The NRBs send majority of remittances through the foreign banks and exchange houses while the central bank could not play any role, he said. Muhith on July 8 said the cost of remittance transfer would be reduced soon to increase its flow to the country.
BRAC Bank welcomes new recruits
BRAC Bank Limited on Wednesday hosted an induction ceremony for its newly hired employees at the bank’s head office in the capital. The new staff are the management trainees hired under the bank’s 13th recruitment drive, said a press release issued on Wednesday. BRAC Bank Chairman Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, KCMG, Directors Shib Narayan Kairy, Zahida Ispahani, Kazi Mahmood Sattar, Kaiser Kabir and Asif Saleh, Managing Director and CEO Selim RF Hussain and Head of Human Resources Bilquis Jahan were, among others, present at the welcome event.
Bangladesh Bank eyes reducing remittance fees
Bangladesh Bank (BB) is likely to determine a low transfer fee for remittance on July 24 with a view to encouraging non-resident Bangladeshis (NRBs) to send more remittances through banking channel. The central bank high-ups organised a meeting with senior officials of top 20 remittance recipient banks to talk over the issue at its head office on Wednesday.BB Executive Director Ahmed Jamal presided over the meeting while senior officials from Agrani Bank, Bank Asia, Brac Bank, Janata Bank, National Bank, Mercantile Bank and Islami Bank, among others, attended the event. Talking to the Dhaka Tribune, one of the government bank representatives said: “We met the central bank authorities to fix a reduced remittance transfer fee. But today’s meeting was a preliminary meeting, the final decision would be taken in the next meeting on July 24.”When contacted, Ahmed Jamal declined to make any comment over the matter. However, he said they sat with top 20 remittance receiver banks after remittance inflows into the country went down. Commissions taken by the exchange houses abroad increase the cost of remittance transfer, Ahmed Jamal said in a meeting with journalists on Tuesday.
Seminar on Trade Finance Process held in DEPZ
A seminar on trade finance process was held on Tuesday in Dhaka Export Processing Zone, with a focus on investment facilities for investors in Uttara, Mongla and Ishwardi Export Processing Zones. Dhaka Export Processing Zone (DEPZ) and Standard Chartered Bank (SCB) jointly organised the seminar. The programme also focused on Foreign exchange guidelines, International Commercial Terms 2010, documents related to import and export transactions from EPZ, common discrepancies in trade documents, etc, said a press release issued on Tuesday. In his inaugural speech, DEPZ General Manager Tanvir Hossain thanked the existing investors for choosing EPZs for their investment. He described the special facilities prevailing in Uttara, Ishwardi and Mongla EPZs in northern and southern part of the country. The investors can avail themselves of seven years tax holiday, a reduced rate on leasing land and standard factory building, logistics support and connectivity with sea, rail, road and air.
Banks asked to open help desks to boost FDI
Bangladesh Bank yesterday asked all banks dealing in foreign currencies to set up at least one dedicated help desk in their Dhaka and Chittagong head offices with competent officials to help potential foreigners in making productive investment. The banks were given 30 days beginning yesterday and asked to inform the foreign exchange investment department of the central bank. The banks can play a vital role with their proactive guidance and the regulatory framework was adopted in line with the government placing high priority on attracting and boosting foreign direct investment (FDI). FDI inflow stood at $652.59 million during January-March this year, according to the central bank data. It includes contributions from economic zones, areas designated for industrial units and with special economic regulations providing entrepreneurs various benefits. The government plans to develop 100 such zones by 2030 on 75,000 acres of land to create jobs for one crore people and produce goods and services worth $40 billion. Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority has so far awarded licences to eight local private companies to set up 10 economic zones. AK Khan and Company, Abdul Monem Ltd, Bay Group, Aman Group, Maisha Group and United Group were each awarded one licence while Meghna Group and Bashundhara Group two.
Pubali Bank Limited Compliance Division and Dhaka Central Regional Office jointly
Pubali Bank Limited Compliance Division and Dhaka Central Regional Office jointly organised a workshop on “AML, ICC, Foreign Remittance, Sanction Screening, Ethical Banking and FATCA” recently at Head Office auditorium. Safiul Alam Khan Chowdhury, Additional Managing Director of Pubali Bank Limited was present as Chief Guest.
New AMD of IBBL
Islami Bank Bangladesh Limited has appointed Md Mahbub ul Alam as Additional Managing Director. Currently, he is heading the Corporate Investment Wing, and Investment (Credit) Committee of the bank. As Deputy Managing Director, he performed responsibilities in International Banking Wing, Operations Wing and Retail Investment Wing of the bank. Mr. Mabbub joined in Islami Bank in 1984. During his long 33 years career, he served the bank in different capacities as Head of different Branches including as Branch Manager of Local Office, the largest operational unit of the bank, and Head of Different Division at Head Office. An FIT Graduate of Parish based ICC, Mr. Alam is a member of ICC Standing Committee for Banking Technique & Practice, and a regular resource person in various academic and training institutes.
National Bank Ltd arranged a workshop on ‘Prevention of Money Laundering
National Bank Ltd arranged a workshop on ‘Prevention of Money Laundering and Combating the Financing of Terrorism’ at National Bank Training Institute in the city recently. Deputy Managing Director of the bank Shah Syed Abdul Bari inaugurated the workshop as the chief guest. Principal (current charge) of the institute Shah Syed Rafiul Bari was also present on the occasion.
Showkat Ali new DMD of Sonali Bank
Md Showkat Ali has recently joined Sonali Bank Limited as new deputy managing director (DMD), said a statement.
Prior to the appointment, he was general manager (GM) of Agrani Bank Limited. He served as head of different division of the bank including Dhaka circle-1. He joined the bank as a senior officer in 1986.Md Showkat Ali has 33 years of experience in the banking sector. He completed his post graduation in Applied Chemistry from the University of Dhaka and secured LLB and MBA degree during his career. He visited many countries to participate in training programmes, seminars and workshop on banking.
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