ADB likely to endorse $500m budgetary aid
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) board is likely to approve US$500 million worth of credit support for Bangladesh on Thursday (May 7) to help the latter meet its budget deficit during the current financial year (FY), officials said on Monday. Following the approval, the government is expected to sign a loan agreement within 7-10 days to get the fiscal support. A senior official of the Ministry of Finance (MoF) told the FE that proposal to approve $500 million budgetary support for Bangladesh will be placed before the Manila-based lender’s board meeting in its headquarter on May 7. The government has been desperately looking for the budgetary support to offset the deficit, which might cross 5.0 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) this FY. The World Bank (WB) in its latest South Asia Economic Focus report has estimated that Bangladesh’s budget deficit might swell to 7.7 per cent of the GDP in FY 2020, the highest in last one and a half decades. The deficit in the next FY might vault a new height of 9.8 per cent of the GDP, the Washington-based lender has projected. The government, in the Tk 5.23 trillion budget in the current FY, projected Tk 1.45 trillion budget deficit, which is 5.0 per cent of the GDP. Out of the deficit, Tk 680.16 billion has been proposed to be bankrolled from external sources, and Tk 773.63 billion from domestic sources. Meanwhile, the government has also sought more budgetary support from the ADB for injecting money into the upcoming national budget, fearing a huge gap between its income and expenditure.
DSE for two-hour digital trading from May 10
The Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) has sought regulatory approval to resume trading for two hours a day from May 10 amid the ongoing general holiday. The premier bourse DSE wants to resume trading connecting the clients through internet, email, mobile apps or any other electronic means. On Monday, the DSE sent a letter to the Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC) seeking its approval required to resume trading discouraging physical presence. The premier bourse has sought temporary waiver, among others, from submission of daily market surveillance report, weekly foreign trade report, and weekly market monitoring report to the BSEC. In order to resume trading amid general holiday, the capital market services will have to be included in the government’s list of emergency services. Later, the closure of the trading was extended twice following extension of public holiday till May 5. The officials said again the public holiday is set to be extended till May 15. The premier bourse DSE wants to resume trading amid ongoing general holiday considering the needs of general investors. The criticisms over the closure of the trading have also intensified the DSE’s move to resume trading.
Businesses to reopen May 10
The government has decided to reopen shopping malls, all types of shops and other businesses from May 10 on a limited scale ahead of the Eid-ul-Fitr. Those would remain open from 10:00am to 4:00pm every day, a gazette of the Cabinet Division said yesterday. People should stay at their present locations during the Eid holidays and that they should be barred from travelling to their homes in other districts and upazilas. The directives came hours after the Cabinet Division issued another gazette, extending the ongoing general holidays from May 7 to May 16, reports UNB. The circular said the government has decided to allow keeping shopping malls, all types of shops and other businesses open maintaining health guidelines during the general holidays considering Ramadan and Eid-ul-Fitr. On March 23, the government declared general holidays from March 26 to April 4 to slow the spread of coronavirus in the country. Later, the holidays were extended five times until May 5. Shopping malls across the country also remained closed since March 25.
Standard Bank employees donate money to Bidyanondo Foundation
During this on-going corona crisis, the employees of Standard Bank Limited donated one day’s salary worth more than Tk 2.8 million to the fund of Bidyanondo Foundation, which is one of the voluntary organisations in the country, engaged in multifarious humanitarian activities. The donated money will be utilized for providing food assistance to 30,000 poor and underprivileged families. During this holy month of Ramadan, the foundation plans to distribute cooked food to about 24,000 people every day and also provide food aid to about 0.3 million families. Khondoker Rashed Maqsood, Managing Director and CEO of Standard Bank Limited, handed over the donation cheque to Jakir Hossain FCCA, ACA, Chief Financial Officer of Bidyanondo Foundation, on behalf of all the bank employees.
Agrani Bank holds virtual board meeting
The 659th meeting of the board of directors of Agrani Bank Limited was held through online video conferencing, said a statement. Chairman of board of directors of Agrani Bank Limited Dr Zaid Bakht presided over the meeting. The meeting discussed financial motivation from government and other important issues of the bank.
Local and Global Stock Indices *
|Index Name||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|↑ 26.07||↑ 0.11 %|
|FTSE100||5753.78||↓ 9.28||↓ 0.16 %|
|Nikkei 225||19619.35||↓ 574.34||↓ 2.84 %|
World Commodities *
|Commodity||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|Crude Oil (WTI)||$ 21.68||↑ 1.29||↑ 6.33 %|
|Crude Oil (Brent)||$ 28.36||↑ 1.16||↑ 4.26 %|
|Gold Spot||$ 1701.12||↓ 0.95||↓ 0.06 %|
Major Currencies Exchange Rates Movement in Last Seven Days *
|USD 1||BDT 83.1360|
|GBP 1||BDT 103.409|
|EUR 1||BDT 90.8200|
|INR 1||BDT 1.10643|
*CURRENCIES AND COMMODITIES ARE TAKEN FROM BLOOMBERG.<