TT-Clean: 77.1 | TK BC-Selling: 78.1
TK OD-Sight: 76.88 TK | TC-Selling: 78.1 TK

TT-Clean: 77.1 | TK BC-Selling: 78.1
TK OD-Sight: 76.88 TK | TC-Selling: 78.1 TK


TT-Clean: 77.1 | TK BC-Selling: 78.1
TK OD-Sight: 76.88 TK | TC-Selling: 78.1 TK

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Important Business News Extracts – March 27 2017

Investigation into BB heist continues

A year after one of the most spectacular robberies of modern times, the authorities in Bangladesh are still trying to crack the case. Hackers into the country’s central bank sent instructions through SWIFT, a messaging network for cross-border payments, to transfer funds from the bank’s account with the New York Federal Reserve to private accounts in Sri Lanka and the Philippines. Much of the stolen $101m has yet to be retrieved; the masterminds are yet to be identified. But the probe reveals the strikingly sophisticated, and international, nature of the crime, reports The Economist. After sifting 60 hard drives and thousands of pieces of paper, and interviewing dozens of people, investigators, talking anonymously in Dhaka, say they are confident about some details of the heist. They believe foreign hackers acted with inside help. The attackers’ coding style has raised suspicions of involvement by North Korea. This week the New York Times reported that American federal prosecutors were examining this possibility. Egregious violations of the bank’s security procedures have also been uncovered. On the day of the robbery, its security cameras were disabled. A number of security protocols need to be met before the SWIFT system authorises a payment: one step, a physical key or dongle, was left plugged in for weeks, rather than locked away. Five of the hackers’ 70 messages were accepted as genuine by the New York Fed. But for basic slip-ups (some payment instructions, for example, were incomplete) the thieves could have made off with $1bn.

Source: http://www.theindependentbd.com/home/printnews/87166

Probe body says Bangladesh Bank caught fire from electric kettle

The probe committee formed over Thursday’s fire incident at the Bangladesh Bank (BB) headquarters in Dhaka has said the fire might have broken out due to a short circuit in an electric kettle. On Saturday, after visiting the spot, the five-member probe body, led Fire Service and Civil Defence Deputy Director (Dhaka division) Somorandro Nath, also said they were looking into whether it was an act of sabotage. Somorandro told the Dhaka Tribune: “Visiting the spot where the fire originated, we found an electric kettle socket burnt and a wall coated with soot, which led us to suspect that the fire broke out due to a short circuit in the kettle.” He claimed that the damage caused by the fire was minimal. “There was no major loss except a computer. Though there was a lot of smoke, it was not a big fire. Even, a towel on the chair next to the kettle was intact,” the official said. “We, however, asked the bank authorities to give us CCTV footage of that day. If we can detect any possible act of sabotage during the investigation, we will mention it in the report,” Somorandro added. The committee hoped to be able to submit its report to the authorities before the stipulated time. The fire broke out on the central bank’s 13th floor on Thursday night, which houses its Foreign Exchange Policy Department.

Source: http://www.dhakatribune.com/business/banks/2017/03/25/probe-bank-fire-kettle/

State FIs, IFIC to get recap funds

At present, a total of Tk2,000 crore has been allocated for recapialisation of the state-run banks. The two state-owned financial institutions and private IFIC Bank are going to get recapitalisation funds in the revised budget, official sources said. They said only Tk1,365.50 crore is left for recapitalisation which is likely to be disbursed among seven state-owned banks suffering capital shortfalls, including BASIC Bank and Sonali Bank. ProbashiKallyan Bank will get Tk250 crore while Bangladesh House Building Finance Corporation will be given Tk200 crore. At present, a total of Tk2,000 crore has been allocated for recapialisation of the state-run banks. Finance ministry will provide Tk184.65 crore for the IFIC as the private commercial bank earlier decided to increase paid-up capital through issuance of rights share after considering bonus shares for stock dividend. The bank will issue one right share against one existing share at a price of Tk10 each on paid-up capital after considering bonus shares for stock dividend. The IFIC Bank was listed on the Dhaka Stock Exchange in 1986. The bank belongs to the “A” category.

Source: http://www.dhakatribune.com/business/banks/2017/03/25/state-fis-ific-get-recap-funds/

State banks fail to improve bad loan situation

The observations came at a recent Finance Division meeting on capital shortfalls of seven state-owned banks with Finance Minister AMA Muhith in the chair. The default loan situation of the state-run banks has not improved while they received budget funds to meet capital shortfalls, observed Finance Division. It said the recapitalisation funds could only improve the banks’ balance sheet. The observations came at a recent Finance Division meeting on capital shortfalls of seven state-owned banks with Finance Minister AMA Muhith in the chair. The meeting said the capital shortfall of the BASIC Bank declined by Tk706 crore during last two fiscal years though the bank’s overall default loan situation has not improved. BASIC Bank received Tk2,390 crore from the budget allocation under the government recapitalisationprogramme. According to the Finance Division working papers, the capital shortfall of the BASIC Bank is Tk1,934.5 crore while the capital reserve ratio was only 7.55% in 2015. An amount of Tk9,457.60 crore were disbursed from the five years budget allocations for recapitalisation.

Source: http://www.dhakatribune.com/business/banks/2017/03/25/state-banks-fail-improve-bad-loan-situation/

Banks reluctant to open street children accounts

The country’s scheduled banks are still reluctant to extend their services to street children and child workers as they (banks) opened only 3,725 accounts for them (children) as on December 31, 2016. On March 10, 2014, Bangladesh Bank in a circular asked all banks to allow street children and child workers to open bank accounts with a Tk 10 minimum initial deposit. The central bank took the initiative to help street children develop saving habits and eventually help them step forward towards a better future. According to the latest BB data, the total deposits in the street children’s accounts stood at Tk 24.42 lakh at the end of December 2016. Seventeen of the 57 scheduled banks have so far opened these accounts. The banks are Sonali Bank, Janata Bank, Rupali Bank, Agrani Bank, Bangladesh Krishi Bank, Bangladesh Development Bank, Bank Asia, Mercantile Bank, Mutual Trust Bank, National Bank, Social Islami Bank, One Bank, Pubali Bank, The City Bank, Trust Bank, Al-ArafahIslami Bank and Uttara Bank. As per the BB guidelines, street children’s accounts should be operated by the non-government organisations nominated by the central bank. The NGOs concerned will nominate at least two of their staff to take care of this programme. One of the two nominated staff should come from the accounting department and the other from the field level. However, the NGOs should take the overall responsibility for operating the accounts, until the street children and child workers reach the age of 18.

Source: http://www.newagebd.net/article/11958/banks-reluctant-to-open-street-children-accounts

Payments for imports keep swelling in Jul-Feb

Country’s import payments increased by 11.13 per cent in the July-February period of the current fiscal year (2016-17) against the 5.58-per cent rise registered in the corresponding period of the FY 2015-16. According to the latest Bangladesh Bank data, letters of credit involving $29.84 billion were settled in the eight months of FY17 against $26.85 billion settled in the same period a year ago. A BB official told New Age on Thursday that the settlement of LCs, or actual import payments, soared in the July-February period of this fiscal year as the import of capital machinery and industrial raw materials increased significantly. In the period, import of industrial raw materials posted a growth of 2.01 per cent against the 4.24-per cent growth in the corresponding period of FY16. Settlement of LCs for industrial raw materials amounted to $10.77 billion in the eight months of the current fiscal year against $10.56 billion in the same period of FY16. The BB official said that the political unrest and uncertainty had recently eased that encouraged the businesspeople to import more industrial raw materials. The BB data showed that settlement of LCs for capital machinery import in the eight months of the current fiscal year witnessed a 58.55-per cent growth against the 15.46-per cent growth in the same period a year ago.

Source: http://www.newagebd.net/article/12024/payments-for-imports-keep-swelling-in-jul-feb

Agent banking getting popular

Agent banking is gaining popularity, particularly among Bangladeshis living abroad, because of its convenient and cost-effective nature. The business seems so attractive that some banks have dumped their mobile banking efforts and gone for agent banking. Agent banking offers limited banking and financial services to the underserved population by engaging representatives under a valid agency agreement. It is the owner of an outlet who conducts banking transactions on behalf of a bank. Remittance sent through agent banking was BDT 3.1 billion between October and December last year. Comparable quarterly figure for remittance sent through mobile banking was not available but migrant workers sent home BDT 81.2 million in December using mobile banking, according to data from the central bank. The total money transacted via agent banking stood at BDT 3.8 billion in December last year. However, mobile banking is still the most popular service in Bangladesh when it comes to sending and receiving funds locally. In January alone, BDT 252.1 billion changed hands via the mobile banking platform. Thirteen banks have so far received permission from the Bangladesh Bank to roll out agent banking services. Of them, 11 banks have already made a foray into the business. The number of agents is 1,646 and outlets 2,601, while the number of accounts is 544,536.

Source: http://www.thedailystar.net/business/agent-banking-getting-popular-1380442

Banks, financials lure investors most

Investors concentrated mostly on banks and financial institutions which dominated the market last week helping the Dhaka bourse close higher. The Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) featured a total turnover of Tk 58.9 billion in five sessions of the last week. And the average daily turnover value was Tk 11.8 billion, which was 13.5 per cent higher than that of the previous week. The DSE’s benchmark index DSEX rose 0.44 per cent or 24.96 points to close at 5,726.23 points. According to market reviews by institutions, investors’ participation in the sector comprising banks and financial institutions increased following the corporate declarations made for the year ended on June 30, 2016.

Source: http://print.thefinancialexpress-bd.com/2017/03/26/168322

Bepza to lease land for EPZ in Chittagong

Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority (Bepza) will lease 1,150 acres of land at Tk 300 crore at Mirsarai in Chittagong to set up an economic zone. Bepza has received permission from the Prime Minister’s Office to sign a memorandum of understanding with Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority (Beza) in this regard. The deal will be signed this week for 50 years, which can be extended upon mutual understanding, said a Beza official. “Bepza has the experience and skills to operate export processing zones and attract investment from home and abroad,” said Paban Chowdhury, executive chairman of Beza. “We hope our objective of industrialisation and employment generation through the economic zones will be fulfilled.” Beza aims to create jobs for one crore people in 100 economic zones by 2030 and produce goods and services worth $40 billion. An economic zone is a designated area in a country with special economic regulations that differ from the rest of the country. An entrepreneur can enjoy various benefits, including tax incentives, from the authorities by setting up an industrial unit in an economic zone.

Source: http://www.thedailystar.net/business/bepza-lease-land-epz-chittagong-1381858

Four local cos look to form JV with BSC

Four local private companies have expressed their interest to form joint venture (JV) company with the Bangladesh Shipping Corporation (BSC) to buy or charter mother vessels for carrying crude oil, officials said. They submitted proposals to the BSC as the Corporation invited expression of interest (EoI) from national investors/bidders for operating (through chartering or procurement) of mother tankers to carry oil for the Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC), they added. The ministry of shipping (MoS) this week formed a six-member committee, led by BSC managing director H R Bhuiyan to evaluate the proposals. The committee has been asked to scrutinise those in line with the Public Procurement Rules-2008. Officials said SaifPowertec, Fazle Shipping Lines, and East Coast Shipping Lines are among the companies which expressed their interest to partner with BSC.

Source: http://www.thefinancialexpress-bd.com/2017/03/24/65214/Four-local-cos-look-to-form-JV-with-BSC

European Parliament delegation meets RMG leaders in Dhaka Monday

A four-member European Parliament delegation will have talks with leaders of garment industry in Dhaka on Monday. Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) President M Siddiqur Rahman will preside over the discussion to be held in a city hotel, said a BGMEA official. The delegation members are Linda McAvan, Arne Lietz, Nobert Neuser and Agnes Jongerius, said an official at the Foreign Ministry. They are also likely to meet Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina before wrapping up their visit on Wednesday. Trade, political and security issues are likely to be discussed during their talks with top government officials.


EU warns Bangladesh of GSP suspension over labour rights

The European Union has warned Bangladesh of suspending trade preferences unless the country makes progress in the implementation of worker rights. Three European Commission bodies in a joint communique on March 18 said it was essential that Bangladesh implemented the four recommendations made by an International LabourOrganisation committee last year, or risk being shut out from the Generalised Scheme of Preferences that it enjoyed. Without progress on this issue, the commission could launch a formal investigation, which could result in temporary withdrawal of preferences, the letter said. Currently, Bangladesh enjoys duty-free market access to the EU countries for all products under the Everything But Arms (EBA) preferential tariff scheme. A suspension of this facility could lead up to 12% tariff on imports from Bangladesh. The major part of the import is clothing, which is currently exempted from a 12% tariff, while shrimp is exempted from a tariff of 10%. The three bodies who sent the letter were the European Commission Directorate General for Trade, the European Commission Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, and the European External Action Service.

Source: http://www.hawker.com.bd/news_details.php?news_id=515355

Denim exports to US almost stagnant

Bangladesh’s denim shipments to the US, its single largest export market, have remained stagnant for the last seven years, hovering around the $400-million mark. In 2010, Bangladesh exported $404 million worth of denim products to the US, and since then it peaked at $455 million in 2013, after which it started sliding, according to data from the United States International Trade Commission. Denim exports to the US in 2015 stood at $430 million, and in the first half of 2016, the figure reached $186.30 million. Exporters blamed the slow growth on the growing popularity of overdyed fabrics and higher imports from the US’s neighbouring country Mexico. “Denim shipments to the US were supposed to be higher but for some reasons it did not increase as much as we had expected,” said Kutubuddin Ahmed, chairman of Envoy Group, a major producer and exporter of denim. One of the reasons is the growing popularity of overdyed fabrics, he said.

Source: http://www.thedailystar.net/business/denim-exports-us-almost-stagnant-1381879

Power surplus to hit 6,500 MW by 2021

The country is likely to have an additional 6,500 MW electricity generation capacity against the highest demand by 2021, according to the Power Sector Master Plan-2016, reports BSS. ‘The target power generation capacity would be 21,000 MW against the supply demand of 14,500 MW in 2021 while the current generation capacity reached 15,389 MW,’ said a Power Development Board (PDB) official. Talking to BSS State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid, MP, said that the government has targeted to bring all citizens under electricity coverage by 2021 and presently 80% people of the country have their access to electricity usage. According to the Power Sector Master Plan-2016, the number of power plants in the country was only 27 when Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina took office in 2009, while the number of plants at present stands at 108. Besides, the government signed contracts in 2009 to install 94 power plants having generation capacity of 18,002 MW, of which 61 plants with 6,721 MW joined the operation.


Foreign aid disbursement falls 5.8%

Foreign aid disbursement declined 5.8% year-on-year in the eight months to February this fiscal year. The amount of decline is BDT 119.6 million during the period, which has negative impacts on the balance of payments and is not keeping the government borrowing at tolerable levels. Foreign aid in the pipeline is significantly low as well. At the end of February last year the amount was USD 1.95 billion. In the July-February period of the fiscal last year 2015-16, disbursement stood at USD 2.07 billion, according to the Economic Relations Division (ERD). Of USD 1.95 billion the disbursement of loan amount is BDT 1.7 billion while the grant amount is BDT 224.2 million. “It is now normal matter. Foreign aid disbursement will definitely increase as the Russian authorities are going to disburse a handsome amount of fund for construction of Bangladesh’s first nuclear power plant,” said an ERD official. Bangladesh received 17% less foreign aid in the first half of the current fiscal year for belt-tightening by some donors, especially for a pause made by Japan.

Source: http://www.dhakatribune.com/business/2017/03/24/foreign-aid-disbursement-falls-5-8/

VAT payment goes online with iVAS launch

The government introduced VAT online system Thursday to automate payment and collection of the value added tax (VAT) with the help of Integrated Vat Administration System (iVAS). With the introduction of the system, the revenue board has formally started issuance of new online business identification number (BIN) and other online services of VAT. All of the businesses have to obtain fresh online BIN by June 30, before implementation of the new VAT and Supplementary Duty act-2012. The new law would replace the existing VAT law, framed in 1991. Finance Minister AMA Muhith inaugurated the iVAS system at the under-construction building of the National Board of Revenue (NBR) located in the city’s Agargoan area.


Mobile internet emerging as a revenue churner

Data service is emerging as a solid revenue-generator for mobile operators following the launch of high-speed 3G network in the second half of 2013. In 2016, the segment accounted for 12.5 percent of the revenues for Grameenphone, Robi and Banglalink — the country’s three leading operators who altogether have a market share of about 97 percent. In 2015, data service fetched 8.32 percent of the three operators’ revenues, up from 5 percent in 2014 and 2 percent in 2013. “In our assessment, it will take 7 to 8 years for operators to earn more from data services than voice services,” said EkramKabir, vice-president of Robi. Kabir’s comment echoes those of other operators.

Source: http://www.thedailystar.net/business/mobile-internet-emerging-revenue-churner-1381876

Biscuit market grows fast as demand rises

Biscuits are fast becoming the snack of choice for Bangladeshi consumers, enabling the market to grow 15% a year, said industry insiders. The market for biscuits is now worth BDT 50.0-BDT 60.0 billion, with large, well-known brands taking up a major share. The annual market for branded biscuits is nearly BDT 30.0 billion now. The market was earlier dominated by small bakeries. Demand for biscuits is growing as entrepreneurs have shifted to automation in baking and consumers are looking for a variety of quality foods at low prices. Encouraged by rising demand, particularly from the lower middle and middle income groups, a number of large firms have joined the foray in the last several years. Some old players have also expanded their production capacity. Recently, Reedisha Food and Beverage Ltd, a concern of Kohinoor Chemical Co (Bangladesh) Ltd, unveiled its plan to cater the domestic biscuit market as well. The local firms have been able to win the confidence of consumers by improving food quality and keeping prices reasonable, said industry insiders. As a result, they have been able to sustain their position in the market by driving away imported products from India, Malaysia and Indonesia. Domestic manufacturers now meet 90-95% of demand for biscuits; some of them also export biscuits, according to operators.

Source: http://www.thedailystar.net/business/biscuit-market-grows-fast-demand-rises-1381864

Local and Global Stock Indices

Index NameClose ValueValue ChangePercentage Change
Nikkei 22518,970.79↓291.74↓1.51%

World Commodities

CommodityClose ValueValue ChangePercentage Change
Crude Oil (WTI)*$47.83↓0.14↓0.29%
Crude Oil (Brent)*$50.73↓0.07↓0.14%
Gold Spot*$1,256.52↑12.95↑1.04%

Major Currencies Exchange Rates Movement in Last Seven Days





Dear Valued Patrons,

At the very onset, let me express my heartiest gratitude for allowing us to serve you and I also wanted to reach out to you directly with an assurance that Dhaka Bank is fully equipped to support you during this difficult time.

Last couple of weeks ago we all were living in a peaceful condition, performing our daily tasks freely and perfectly. Entire economy and business environment was also in a good shape, until COVID-19 put a forceful stoppage to the overall life style and economy of the world. We all know that social distancing and cleanliness are the keys to prevent this pandemic. Hence, we urge your conscious effort to limiting public interaction and suspending wherever possible.

In this current situation, Dhaka Bank and its employees are beside you where we are fully online, either working from home or at our offices under a robust Business Continuity Plan (BCP) to serve you with limited branch banking and a full-fledged alternate delivery channel services.

Our state of the art Mobile App, Dhaka Bank GO (Click https://bit.ly/2WVfieu) and Internet Banking - Dhaka Bank Direct gives you the freedom of banking online anytime from anywhere. You can check the balance and transfer money to any designated Banks including any Dhaka Bank or bKash Account, make utility bill payments and mobile top-up through our Mobile App and Internet Banking Services. Our ATMs are also running efficiently with availability of sufficient cash for your convenience where you can make cash withdrawals whenever the need arises. Mentionable, the withdrawal of cash from any ATMs within Bangladesh with Dhaka Bank Debit Cards are absolutely free of charges up till April 30, 2020 (Dhaka Bank will bear the cost). Our corporate customers can also use our completely safe and secured online platform Dhaka Bank C-Solution for Payments, Inter Bank Fund Transfers, etc.

Moreover, to fulfill your urgent requirement, we have a limited no. of branches up and running by ensuring all kinds of precautionary and safety measures for you.

In case of extreme emergency and facing difficulties in conducting banking transactions, please let us know through our 24/7 Contact Center number 16474 (or, dial +8809678016474 for ISD/Overseas Calls). We are always with you to combat your difficulties.

As you know we are going through a critical phase and the situation is novel to all of us. We are getting lot of new information from various sources everyday about COVID-19 which will be shared at www.dhakabankltd.com.

Thank you for your trust and continued support to us. I firmly believe that jointly we will be able to combat this situation and win against all the odds.

Please stay home, stay safe and take care of yourself and family.

Best regards,

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