Parliament Okays finance bill
Parliament on Saturday approved the finance bill-2019 with amendments made by lawmakers and suggestions from businesses. Some 10 lawmakers proposed a public opinion poll on the bill, but that was rejected by voice vote. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina moved the finance bill according to the wish of the finance minister. Finance minister AHM Mustafa Kamal spoke briefly on the bill. On cash dividend, Sheikh Hasina said the government wanted to encourage cash dividend to boost the capital market but financial institutions objected it on many grounds. She said from now on, the ratio of stock dividend and cash dividend will be same and if the stock dividend becomes higher than the cash dividend then 10 per cent tax shall be payable on the full amount. On the retained earnings, the premier said listed companies can transfer up to 70 per cent of their net profits as reserve or surplus. They will have to pay a 10 per cent dividend on the remaining 30 per cent. She said if any company fails to do so then 10 per cent tax shall be payable each year.
WB gives $100m to boost public service delivery
The World Bank will provide Bangladesh with a $100 million fund to help improve public service delivery through an effective, efficient and transparent public financial management system. The Strengthening Public Financial Management (PFM) programme will improve fiscal forecasting and public budget preparation and execution and enhance financial reporting and transparency in education and health ministries and finance and local government divisions. Having improved its PFM systems with prudent fiscal management in the past two decades, Bangladesh still has a few bottlenecks in public resource allocation, availability and use for social service delivery, the WB said. The programme will help Bangladesh use its own systems to address these bottlenecks.
Proposed tax on savings certificates may go
The government might retract its decision to double tax on savings certificates as the move is likely to draw massive criticism from the people. Four types of savings certificates are currently sold and the rates of yield are up to 11.76 per cent. Currently, around 20 million investors are involved in this sector. Currently, the tax is five per cent. Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal recommended increasing the tax to 10 per cent in his proposed budget for 2019-20 fiscal. According to finance ministry and the National Board of Revenue (NBR) sources, the government is currently considering two options. One is to cut the proposed tax on all types of savings certificates. The other is to cut proposed tax on family savings certificates and pensioner savings certificates.
Yarn exports hold potential
Yarn and fabrics export rose 20.46 percent year-on-year to $141.12 million between July and May, an indication that Bangladesh can become a major source for the raw materials if higher production is facilitated. Currently, local spinners are able to meet 85 percent of the demand for the raw materials for the knitwear sector and 40 percent for the woven sector. Bangladesh imports yarn from China and India to meet the local demand. However, the export of yarn, especially cotton yarn, has grown recently. At least six large spinning mills have started exporting specialised cotton yarn, which is very fine, to Indonesia, Sri Lanka and Turkey, said Monsoor Ahmed, Secretary to Bangladesh Textile Mills Association, a platform for spinners, weavers and cotton millers.
Farmers produce litchi worth Tk 1.52b this season in Rangpur
The farmers in Rangpur region have produced 15,225 tonnes of litchi worth Taka 1.52 billion this season, according to the Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) officials. Both litchi growers and traders expressed their happiness over bumper production, better price and excellent business of the seasonal fruit. Horticulture Specialist of DAE at its regional office in Rangpur Agriculturist Khondker Md Mesbahul Islam said litchi farming is expanding every year bringing fortune to many farmers. The farmers had cultivated litchi on 1,750 hectares of land and produced 15,225 tonnes of litchi worth Taka 1.52 billion with an average yield rate of 8.70 tonnes per hectare in the region this season. “The farmers cultivated litchi on 1,551 hectares of land and produced 13,285 tonnes of the fruit worth Taka 1.33 billion in 2017 and on 1,566 hectares and produced 14,848 tonnes of litchi worth Taka 1.48 billion in 2018 in the region,” Mr. Islam added.
MoneyGram launches deposit service for NRBs
MoneyGram (NASDAQ: MGI), a global leader in Omnichannel money transfer and payment services, announced a partnership with Jamuna Bank, creating a convenient and new money deposit option for Non-Resident Bangladeshis (NRB) around the world. The new service enables any Bank account holders in Bangladesh to receive MoneyGram funds directly into their Bank accounts. Jamuna Bank will be responsible for processing of the remittance. To this end, an agreement was signed in the city recently where Mirza Elias Uddin Ahmed, Additional Managing Director, Jamuna Bank Ltd, Yogesh Sangle, Head of Asia Pacific and South Asia and Sheshagiri (Sukesh) Malliah, Regional Head Indian Subcontinent, Indo China and Malaysia, MoneyGram.
Shahjalal Islami Bank launches Shariah-based Credit Card
Shahjalal Islami Bank yesterday launched a Shariah-based credit card. The card is under the concept of Wakalah, which denotes an agency contract where one party appoints another to conduct a defined legal action on one’s behalf for a specified fee. Carrying no issuance charge, the EMV chip-based card will be available in Classic, Gold and Platinum categories.
Prime Bank signs Agreement with SEL
The Prime Bank has recently signed an agreement with Structural Engineers Ltd (SEL) at SEL Centre, Dhaka. Under the deal, both SEL and Prime Bank have jointly initiated home loan offer with preferential pricing.
Local and Global Stock Indices *
|Index Name||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
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World Commodities *
|Commodity||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|Crude Oil (WTI)||$ 58.47||↓0.96||↓1.62%|
|Crude Oil (Brent)||$ $ 64.74||↓0.93||↓1.42%|
|Gold Spot||$1,409.55|| ↓0.23||↓0.02%|
Major Currencies Exchange Rates Movement in Last Seven Days *
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|GBP 1||BDT 105.3090|
|EUR 1||BDT 94.3288|
|INR 1||BDT 1.2013|
*CURRENCIES AND COMMODITIES ARE TAKEN FROM BLOOMBERG.<