Development plans should be climate-smart: ADB
Bangladesh should introduce environment-friendly public transport for both short and long distances to significantly reduce heat-trapping emissions and effectively address climate change effects, ADB’s country director said yesterday. Moreover, the government should coordinate efforts to mainstream adaptation and mitigate cross-cutting actions in development planning and budgeting while ensuring that public investment is “climate smart”, Manmohan Parkash said in a workshop at Pan Pacific Sonargaon Dhaka. Integration of Climate Risk and Vulnerability Assessment (CRVA) tools in development planning and project approval process to minimise climate change loss is highly essential, said the top official of the Asian Development Bank (ADB). Bangladesh is highly vulnerable to climate risks. Tools developed with ADB’s assistance will help make right climate-smart investments, leading to optimal use of public resources. Establishing a climate risk screening system for mainstreaming climate change adaptation into national development budgeting activities.
WB likely to give $188m for renewable energy development
The World Bank (WB) is likely to provide US$ 188 million worth of funds for setting up a 50-megawatt (MW) solar power plant and renewable energy development works. The government in a meeting last week decided to take the financial assistance from the Washington-based lender, they also said. When and if available, the Electricity Generation Company of Bangladesh (EGCB) will construct the 50-MW solar power plant in Feni and the Infrastructure Development Company Limited (IDCOL) will install solar home systems with the WB assistance. Besides, the Sustainable Renewable Energy Development Authority (SREDA) will improve policies for increasing use of the alternative energy in Bangladesh. WB funds will help the government to fulfil its target of ensuring use of 10 per cent renewable energy by 2020. The government has set a target to enhance renewable energy production equivalent to 10 per cent of total power generation in the country by 2020, and to 15 per cent by 2030. The WB has assured the government of providing the funds under the proposed “Scaling up renewable energy project”. 50-MW solar power plant in Feni will be one of the biggest power plants, set up by a public agency. With the support of the WB, they have planned to set up the power station within next two years.
Stakeholders should work together for development of capital market: BSEC Chief
The stakeholders should work together for further development of the country’s capital market. Professor M. Khairul Hossain, the chairman of Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC), said this on Wednesday when newly-elected leaders of the DSE Brokers Association of Bangladesh (DBA) called on him at his office. The ongoing development of the capital market should be continued. The stakeholders should come forward to solve any problem through discussion. The DBA will work for the market development under the leadership of the securities regulator.
Corporate houses launch CSR Network
A group of leading companies launched a platform named the “Corporate Responsibility Network” (CRN) to promote and ensure sustainable development in the country. This forum is the first of its kind in Bangladesh with an objective to promote Corporate Social Responsibilities (CSR) through knowledge sharing and integration of initiatives by various companies. By any economic standard, Bangladesh has done fairly well in last 10 years and has now emerged as a role model to be followed by the world. These success stories are attributed not just to the government organizations but corporate companies as well. Moderated by Sumaya Rashid, Country Director of SR Asia Bangladesh, the programme covered different sustainable CSR projects such as Bonayan, Probaho, Odomyo, and Swapna, undertaken by different companies. There are significant number of companies in the country that are yet to come up with any CSR initiative. We are engaging with organizations for collaboration and contribute in taking the country forward through sustainable CSR initiatives.
Armed Forces Income Tax Fair begins
A two-day income tax fair began at the Sena Malancha Convention Hall in the city on Wednesday, aiming to facilitate tax-related services for the members of the armed forces. The National Board of Revenue (NBR) Tax Zone 9, Dhaka, and the Armed Forces Division (AFD) jointly organised the event.
Savings instrument database from Feb
The much-awaited database of national savings certificate holders, which is expected to check the current misuse of the high-yielding savings tools, is expected to take off from February next year. Finance Minister AMA Muhith in his budget speech for fiscal 2017-18 had announced the roll-out of the database during the fiscal year. The database will be linked with those of the NID and TIN, meaning a person wanting to purchase savings instruments will have to mention his/her income and other relevant information in the form. The rate of interest on savings certificates is about 12 percent, in contrast to 6 to 7 percent interest offered by banks on their deposit products. The high yield has persuaded many to park all their funds in savings instruments, denying banks of deposits. The allocation for interest payment in this year’s budget is Tk 48,377 crore. Last fiscal year, the government’s borrowing target from savings instruments was Tk 30,150 crore, but it ended up borrowing Tk 46,530 crore. The target for this fiscal year is Tk 26,197 crore, but in the first three months the government has already borrowed Tk 13,412 crore. The database is expected to dampen the buying pressure of savings instruments.
AIIB confirms $3.0m grant for two RHD projects
Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has assured Bangladesh of providing necessary technical support for preparing two regional road connectivity projects to be funded by the lender. During their visit to Bangladesh from November 17 to November 22, an AIIB mission confirmed a grant amounting to around US$ 3.0 million for the two projects undertaken by Roads and Highways Department (RHD). We expect around US$ 500 million loan from AIIB for the implementation of Kewatkhali bridge construction and Sylhet-Tamabil four-lane projects. They assured the government of providing US$ 300 million for the Sylhet-Tamabil four-lane project and $ 180 million for the Kewatkhali bridge construction project. Some 900-metre Kewatkhali bridge will connect Mymensingh city with three districts Kishoreganj, Netrakona and Sherpur and will help facilitate trade and business through three land ports including Gubrakura and Nokugaon. The area is connected with Assam of India. The 58-kilometre Sylhet-Tamabil highway will establish direct links with Indian hilly border of Shillong. The highway is the part of Dhaka-Sylhet-Tamabil road. The 226-km Dhaka-Sylhet highway four-lane development work is now being carried out with the government’s own fund. This is also a part of Asian Highway-2 which will cross Bangladesh through Banglabandha, Joydebpur, Dhaka, Kanchpur, Sylhet and Tamabil.
BMDA executes socio-economic improvement project in 25 UZs
The Barind Multipurpose Development Authority (BMDA) has implemented a project for improving the socio-economic condition of the people living in the Barind tract. BMDA sources said the ‘Barind Integrated Area Development Project’ (phase-3) was implemented in all the 25 upazilas under Rajshahi, Naogaon and Chapainawabganj districts recently. The Tk 2.84 billion project had been designed to bring additional 45,000 hectares under controlled and appropriate irrigation management system through installation of new deep tube wells (DTWs). By enhancing electrical networks for the new DTWs, the project ensures supplementary irrigation to another 60,000 hectares on its successful implementation. Only in the Barind area, around 0.23 million hectares remain beyond irrigation facility and if this huge land is brought under irrigation nearly 1.6 million tonnes of additional food grain would be produced.
Subscription of ‘SEML FBLSL Growth Fund’ to open Dec 2
The public subscription of ‘SEML FBLSL Growth Fund’, a closed-end mutual fund, will be started on December 02. The growth fund, which is 10 years tenure, will raise a fund worth Tk 550 million from the public through initial public offering (IPO). The IPO subscription of the fund will be continued till December 13. The securities regulator – Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC) approved the draft prospectus of ‘SEML FBLSL Growth Fund’ on February 13. As per the BSEC approval, the total size of the ‘SEML FBLSL Growth Fund’ is Tk 1.0 billion. Of the fund’s total size, Tk 100 million was financed by FBL Securities Limited, the sponsor of the mutual fund and Tk 350 million was collected through pre-IPO placement. Remaining Tk 550 million will be collected through initial public offering (IPO) from general investors. The face value of the fund is Tk 10 each. A market lot is 500 units and an investor needs Tk 5,000 to apply for each lot of the fund’s IPO. For non-resident Bangladeshis and foreign applicants, the required amount (per lot) for subscription is US$ 60.13 or GBP 45.93 or EUR 52.90, according to the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE).
56 cos to get export trophies
A total of 56 companies will be awarded the National Export Trophy 2015-16 for their outstanding performance in the export sector, according to the commerce ministry. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will hand over the trophies to these companies at Sonargaon Hotel in the capital on December 02. The companies have been selected for the export trophies on the basis of their export performance. Of the 56 companies, 25 enterprises had been selected for gold trophy, 17 for silver trophy and 14 for bronze trophy for the fiscal year 2015-16.
Local and Global Stock Indices *
|Index Name||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
World Commodities *
|Commodity||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|Crude Oil (WTI)||$ 50.66||↑0.37||↑0.74%|
|Crude Oil (Brent)||$ 59.00||↑0.24||↑0.41%|
|Gold Spot||$ 1,223.49||↑2.26||↑0.19%|
Major Currencies Exchange Rates Movement in Last Seven Days *
|USD 1||BDT 83.8273|
|GBP 1||BDT 107.5756|
|EUR 1||BDT 95.3871|
|INR 1||BDT 1.1957|
*CURRENCIES AND COMMODITIES ARE TAKEN FROM BLOOMBERG.