Southeast, Bank Asia most Efficient, Profitable Lenders
Southeast Bank is the most profitable and efficient lender in Bangladesh followed by Bank Asia while Dutch-Bangla Bank is the least, according to an analysis of different Banks’ cost-to-income ratio. Last year, Southeast’s cost-to-income ratio was less than 35 percent, meaning that it had to spend Tk 35 for Tk 100 operating revenues. Bank Asia had the next best ratio of 43 percent, followed by Eastern Bank at 45.63 percent. A general rule of thumb is that any figure above 50 percent refers to inefficiency. But almost all the Banks in Bangladesh fall in this category. Dutch-Bangla Bank’s ratio was the highest at 68 percent, followed by Brac Bank at 64 percent [consolidated]. According to the S&P Global Market Intelligence report, Bangladeshi Banks’ average cost-to-income ratio was 55.25 percent in 2018, higher than those in China, Thailand, India and Vietnam. Brac Bank and Dutch-Bangla Bank have the higher ratio as they have invested heavily in people and technology.
Source Tax on Exports cut by three-fourths
The government, on Monday, reduced the source tax on export proceeds for all sectors from 1.0 per cent to 0.25 per cent to help the export-oriented sector stay competitive. The reduced source tax was made effective from Monday. The National Board of Revenue has issued a regulatory order in this connection. Exporters will not be able to adjust or get refund of the source tax paid at a rate of 1.0 per cent between July 1 and October 20, 2019, according to the order. The reduced source tax rate will be valid until June 30, 2020. Income tax officials said the source tax has been reduced following demand from the export-oriented sectors, including the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association. Last year, exporters, except for jute and jute goods, enjoyed 0.25 per cent tax on export-proceeds. However, as per the Income Tax Ordinance-1984, the standard rate of source tax rate for exporters is 1.0 per cent. Officials said the NBR will lose Tk 20 billion as source tax this year from the apparel sector due to cut in the tax rates.
Trade gains to depend on Human Rights, Governance
The European Union [EU] reiterated its stance that the continuation of Bangladesh’s trade benefits to its market will depend on the condition of human rights and governance in the country. The EU also raised concerns over the current situation of human rights here, particularly focusing on ‘extrajudicial killings’, ‘enforced disappearances’, certain provisions of the Digital Security Act [DSA], and freedom of expression. The observations were made at the 9th Bangladesh-EU Joint Commission Meeting [JCM], held at the Economic Relations Division [ERD] in Dhaka on Monday. According to the EU team at the JCM, the human rights issues – especially labor rights, factory safety, civil society’s voice, and governance in the country – are very crucial for the sustained economic and trade relations between the two sides. The EU and Bangladesh agreed to develop a roadmap on some issues for strengthening compliance with labor and human rights. The EU also agreed to extend its assistance for the post-2020 cooperation agenda, also taking into account the country’s upcoming 8th five-year development plan.
City Bank’s EPS jumps 17pc
City Bank posted consolidated earnings per share of Tk 2.58 in the first three quarters of 2019, up 16.74 percent year-on-year. Addressing an event organized yesterday for disclosing its earnings, Md Mahbubur Rahman, chief financial officer, made a presentation on the financial performance of the Bank. City Bank’s consolidated profit after tax was Tk 262.2 crore for January to September period. It was Tk 225 crore during the same nine-month period a year ago, according to the official of the listed first generation Private Commercial Bank at its head office in Dhaka. The lender has been able to draw much attention from the investor community worldwide in recent years for its noticeable presence and growth in the Private Commercial Banking industry in Bangladesh, according to Mashrur Arefin, managing director and CEO. Existing and potential investors, researchers and analysts joined the event through web platforms. The Bank has attracted attention from investment communities across the globe in recent years. International Finance Corporation, the World Bank Group’s private sector arm, holds a 5 percent stake in City Bank.
Chinese Firm to invest $2m in Ctg EPZ
An agreement was signed between Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority [Bepza] and a Chinese company yesterday for implementing the latter’s plan to invest $2 million to establish a factory inside Chattogram Export Processing Zone. Yifa Jute & Sisal Products plans to annually produce 1,000 tonnes of rope and 1,500 tonnes of twine alongside cloth from jute and sisal employing some 101 Bangladeshis. It also plans to make such products from Manila hemp and cotton.
Govt looks for causes of Small Share in Global Mkt
The government is searching for causes behind a slow progress in grabbing the global market of high-end apparel products despite Bangladesh being the second-largest garment exporter, officials have said. Stakeholders say around 5.0 per cent of total Bangladeshi apparel exports contains high-end fashion products. There is a scope to raise the share of high-end products if the government comes forward with necessary supports. The government last week formed an inter-ministerial body led by commerce secretary Dr Jafar Uddin to identify the challenges in producing high-end fashion products, devise strategy to explore new markets and recommend ways to face post-LDC challenges successfully. Some leading entrepreneurs have started producing high-quality wardrobes but still that is very small portion. The work order for high-end products comes in small quantity which Bangladeshi manufacturers don’t find profitable, according to Mr Rahman. In fiscal year 2018-19, Bangladesh exported apparel worth $34.13 billion, registering an 11.49 per cent growth year-on-year.
Turnover remains poor on DSE
Stocks slipped into the red on Monday, after a single-day break, as risk-averse investors went on selling binge on sector specific shares. DSEX, the prime index of the Dhaka Stock Exchange [DSE], went down by 20.67 points or 0.43 per cent to settle at 4,761, after adding 11 points in the previous day. According to the Market analysts, ongoing depressed market outlook coupled with growing concern about the telecom regulator moves to appoint administrator to GP over unpaid dues dragged the market down. The shaky investors sold their holdings from BATBC, GP, Square Pharma, IFAD Autos and Bangladesh Submarine Cable, contributing 23 points fall of DSEX jointly. Earnings per share [EPS] of GP plunged 13.92 per cent to Tk 5.38 for July-September 2019 against Tk 6.25 in the same quarter a year ago. The institutional investors are suffering from liquidity crunch while the retail investors are not confident enough to inject fresh funds into stocks.
Credit for Small and Marginal Farmers
The Bangladesh Krishi Bank [BKB] has a plan for disbursing loans among small and marginal farmers including small rural entrepreneurs under a Tk 100 billion credit programme. If things go according to the plan, the long-term credit scheme will take off on March 17 next year. The professed objective sounds highly rational. People at the bottom rung of society with little or no access to institutional credit facilities are the target here. These are the extreme poor who have no asset to produce as collateral and are therefore left out of any credit programme. The BKB’s advantages in terms of the location of its branches are also its disadvantages in another sense. Deposit at the union level is scarce. So the Bank has embarked on outsourcing funds.
Dhaka, Victoria ink deal on Manpower Recruitment
Dhaka and Victoria on Monday signed a deal on manpower recruitment, paving the way for resumption of manpower export from Bangladesh to Seychelles. Expatriates Welfare and Overseas Employment Minister Imran Ahmed and Employment, Immigration and Civil Status Minister of the East African country Myriam Telemaque signed the agreement in Victoria on behalf of their respective countries. Seychelles suspended manpower hiring temporarily from Bangladesh in October 2018. The ban was imposed after six Bangladeshi employees of a security firm approached media houses to express their frustration as their employers had failed to pay them their wages. Both countries have recently shown interests to make a deal on manpower recruitment with a view to sending workers under a proper structure and with lower migration cost. The Indian Ocean nation hosts 25,000 foreign workers where the country’s population is around 100,000.
Transport bodies trail badly for Staffers
Transport agencies have long been lacking in skilled manpower, simply affecting the country’s vital sector from planning to execution and regulatory stages. As such, the sector is gripped with problems like increased road casualties, geriatric vehicles, rickety roads and chaotic traffic system. Vacancies in road transport and bridges ministry and its allied agencies are mainly for not taking a timely effort. On the one hand, road transport and highways division is overburdened with top-grade officials, but on the other, it lacks officials of different grades. Dhaka Transport Coordination Authority [DTCA], Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation [BRTC] and Bangladesh Road Transport Authority [BRTA] also need staff to man their routine work. BRTC operates state-run bus and trucks to check unfair competition by private operators. BRTA formulates regulations for transport and ensures road safety. According to the latest data, RTHD has 72 posts vacant-23 in grade one, 22 in grade two, 15 in grade three and 12 in grade four.
Local and Global Stock Indices *
|Index Name||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|↑ 57.44 ||↑ 0.21% |
|FTSE100||7,163.64 ||↑ 13.07 ||↑ 0.18% |
|Nikkei 225||22,548.90 || ↑ 56.22 ||↑ 0.25%|
World Commodities *
|Commodity||Close Value||Value Change||Percentage Change|
|Crude Oil (WTI)|| $ 53.33 ||↑ 0.02 ||↑ 0.04%|
|Crude Oil (Brent)||$ 58.95 || ↓ 0.01 ||↓ 0.02%|
|Gold Spot||$1,484.43 ||↓ 0.07 ||0.00% |
Major Currencies Exchange Rates Movement in Last Seven Days *
|USD 1||BDT 83.0407|
|GBP 1||BDT 107.583|
|EUR 1||BDT 92.6394|
|INR 1||BDT 1.17240|
*CURRENCIES AND COMMODITIES ARE TAKEN FROM BLOOMBERG.<