FDI hits all time high
Foreign direct investment to Bangladesh surged 51 percent last fiscal year to its highest on record, riding largely on Japan Tobacco Inc’s acquisition of Akij Group’s tobacco business for $1.47 billion. In 2018-19, net FDI stood at $3.88 billion in contrast to $2.58 billion a year earlier, according to data from the central bank. Japan Tobacco, one of the largest tobacco companies in the world, completed the acquisition of Dhaka Tobacco, a concern of Akij Group, in November last year, in what was the biggest ever single FDI in Bangladesh. Mr. Mansur also said there is no ray of hope to widen the periphery of FDI in the next few years as Bangladesh is yet to become an investment destination for foreigners because of poor governance and low ranking in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business index. Bangladesh advanced eight notches to 168th out of 190 counties in this year’s ranking. The FDI posted a significant jump in equity capital, or new investment, climbing 94 percent year-on-year to $1.19 billion. Intra-company loans rose 87 percent to $1.33 billion and reinvestment of earnings by existing foreign companies grew 8.77 percent to $1.36 billion.
RMG exporters to go all out for fair prices
In a desperate move for better prices, Bangladeshi garment exporters are planning to hold rallies and human chains in major European cities to create awareness among the end consumers. The activist move comes after brands opposed the idea of fixing a base price for garment items. At present, as many as 39 percent of the garment manufacturers are selling garment items to buyers at prices lower than the production costs, according to a survey of the Fair Wear Foundation, an Amsterdam-based organisation that works to improve labour conditions in garment factories. The cost of production of apparel items increased 30 percent between 2014 and 2018, she said. Furthermore, the minimum wage of the garment workers has increased 51 percent since December last year. Between fiscal years 2015-16 and 2018-19, the industry’s value addition has gone down 1.61 percent though apparel exports have increased from $28.10 billion to $34.13 billion during the period. Almost 85 percent of the garment products from Bangladesh are headed to the EU and North America.
NBR expects Tk 3,000cr from tax fair
The annual tax fair begins in all divisional headquarters tomorrow to help taxpayers submit returns and complete related formalities without any hassle. In the capital, the weeklong fair will take place at the Officers’ Club. The NBR will simultaneously organise the show for four days in all district towns and for two days in 48 upazilas and one day in eight upazilas between November 14 and November 20. This year will mark the 10th year for the tax fair, which is being organised to raise awareness on the necessity of paying tax for national development and encourage more people to start the practice in a country where the tax-to-GDP ratio is one of the lowest globally. Since its inception in 2010, the tax fair has gained popularity as it gives an opportunity to people to submit income tax returns within a short time and without visiting any tax offices. Last year, the fair fetched a record Tk 2,468 crore for the NBR, up 11 percent year-on-year. The collection grew 21 folds from Tk 113 crore in 2010. The number of tax returns submitted at the event rose nine times to 4.87 lakh in 2018 from 52,544 in 2010, according to the NBR. Bhuiyan expects that the gathering of taxpayers would continue to swell and enable the tax collector to generate Tk 3,000 crore from the show this year. The number of tax return submission will increase to nearly 30 lakh at the end of the current fiscal year, from nearly 22 lakh the previous year. The government has a target to raise the number of tax returns submission to one crore by 2021.
Alibaba’s Singles’ Day sales hit record $38b
Chinese shoppers set new records for spending during the annual “Singles’ Day” buying spree despite an economic slowdown and worries over the US trade war, with state media calling it a sign of China’s rising economic strength. E-commerce giant Alibaba said consumers spent $38.3 billion on its platforms on Monday during the world’s biggest 24-hour shopping event, up 26 percent from the previous all-time high mark set last year. The growth rate slowed slightly, however, from the 27 percent increase last year and 39 percent in 2017. Alibaba’s main domestic competitor JD.com, which holds an 11-day promotion ending at midnight on November 11, said early Tuesday it had handled sales over that stretch totalling $29.2 billion, which was up 30 percent. From the ‘world’s factory’ to the ‘world’s market’, a China that is continually moving towards high-quality development will unleash greater consumption potential in the future, allowing China’s dividends to benefit the whole world.” Singles’ Day, also called “11.11” for the November 11 date, was originally set as an unofficial day for unmarried Chinese. Consumers gave little indication of worry, charging out of the gate with $1 billion spent via Alibaba platforms in the first 68 seconds. US-listed Alibaba earlier this month said revenue growth in its most recent financial quarter slowed to 40 percent, from 54 percent in the same quarter last year.
E-Carnival begins at BRAC University
A two-day e-commerce fair began in the city’s BRAC University auditorium on Tuesday, aiming to promote budding entrepreneurs and create a matchmaking platform for the sellers and prospective buyers. The event titled ‘E-Carnival 4.0’ is the fourth edition of its kind organised by the BRAC University Business Club (BIZ BEE). 16 e-commerce businesses are taking part in the E-Carnival, showing and selling wide range of products including attires, beauty care, cosmetics, food items, gifts, ornaments and accessories. A good number of the entrepreneurs are either students or alumnus of the BRAC University (BU).
Islami Bank opens Western Union services
Islami Bank Bangladesh Limited (IBBL) inaugurated Western Union’s remittance services through its branches at a city hotel recently, said a statement. Customers can remit money to IBBL from 0.55 million agent points of Western Union in more than 200 countries and regions of the world.
FSIBL opens Non Fiction Book Fair at DU
First Security Islami Bank Ltd (FSIBL) sponsored the ‘5th Non Fiction Book Fair 2019’ inaugurated at the University of Dhaka on Tuesday. The 5th Non Fiction Book Fair 2019 was jointly organised by Banik Barta and Faculty of Business Studies, University of Dhaka. Prof. Dr. Akhtaruzzaman, Vice-Chancellor, Dhaka University inaugurated the fair.
ERA-InfoTech celebrates 17th anniversary
ERA-InfoTech Limited, an IT concern of Bank Asia, celebrated its 17th anniversary recently, said a statement. Chairman A Rouf Chowdhury expressed his satisfaction over the rapid improvement of ERA and hope that it would go further in the days ahead. Mr. Mihir Kanti Majumder, Chairman of Palli Sanchay Bank, in his speech thanked ERA for the outstanding contribution on innovation, development and implementation of software automation of Amar Bari Amar Khamar project. He wished for the subsequent prosperity of ERA-InfoTech Ltd and pledged to go a long way together.
Local and Global Stock Indices *
|Index Name||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|DSEX||4,781.47581||↑ 9.55919||↑ 0.20|
World Commodities *
|Commodity||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|Crude Oil (WTI)||$ 56.69||↓ 0.11|| ↓ 0.19% |
|Crude Oil (Brent)|| $ 61.92||↓ 0.14 ||↓ 0.23% |
|Gold Spot||$ 1,459.26||↑2.94||↑ 0.20% |
Major Currencies Exchange Rates Movement in Last Seven Days *
|USD 1||BDT 83.1077|
|GBP 1||BDT 106.778|
|EUR 1||BDT 91.5899|
|INR 1||BDT 1.16141|
*CURRENCIES AND COMMODITIES ARE TAKEN FROM BLOOMBERG.<