Quality of economic growth improves
The quality of Bangladesh’s economic growth has improved between 2000 and 2015, according to an index developed by the South Asian Network on Economic Modeling. The country ranked 106th among 156 nations in 2015 in the Index of Quality of Economic Growth up by six notches from 112 in 2000. Bangladesh scored 42.7 on a scale of 0 to 100, according to the research organization. This shift has happened with the growing understanding that a mere increase in economic growth rate is not sufficient to achieve much larger social development goals. It measured the IQEG for 156 countries for 16 years between 2000 and 2015. South Asian country, except Afghanistan, improved their index values from 2000 to 2015. The South Asian average IQEG in 2000 was 37.32, which increased to 40.90 in 2015. Meanwhile for Southeast Asian countries, the average increased from 50.12 to 54.83. Bangladesh spends 2 percent of the GDP on education and 0.8 percent on health whereas spending on the sectors was 4-5 percent of GDP. The countries at the lower level of institutional quality will always face the steep challenge of converting the quantity of growth into quality growth until these countries invest on improving their institutional performances.
Develop border infrastructure, remove trade barriers to boost BD-India ties
The economic prosperity of India and Bangladesh could be improved by developing border infrastructure and removing basic trade barriers, top politicians and experts said at a seminar on Sunday, reports IANS. The Haldia port near Kolkata is 1,220 km from Assam while the Chittagong international port is less than 70 km from Sabroom in Tripura, he said. The Agartala Press Club organised the seminar on ‘Strengthening Indo-Bangladesh relationship’ and many experts and politicians from both the countries took part in the event. Former governor of Bangladesh Bank Atiur Rahman said the two countries in recent years had resolved decades-old issues, including exchange of 162 enclaves and maritime boundaries. Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) President Shafiul Islam Mohiuddin urged the media for objective reporting on the issues relating to India and Bangladesh.
Govt plans to implement 10 power projects by 2030
The government is going to implement 10 mega projects of about 15,000 MW of capacity by 2030 as part of its Power System Master Plan (PSMP) 2016, reports UNB. Director General of Power Cell Mohammad Hossain, who is involved in chalking out the plan, said the government has already initiated a move to implement the plan as per its vision to raise electricity production to 40,000 MW by 2030 and 60,000 MW by 2041.
However, the government’s main focus in the existing plan is on raising the electricity production to 24,000 MW by 2021 when the country will be celebrating the 50th year of independence, said the Power Cell chief. Of the 15,000 MW of power, officials said, 11,000 MW will come from nine projects of the Power and Energy Ministry while 4,000 MW from nuclear power plant under the Ministry of Science and Technology.They are 1320 MW Moitri Super Thermal Power Project taken under Bangladesh-India joint venture with a target to implement it by 2019 in Rampal, 1200 MW Materbari Coal-based Power Plant of Coal Power General Company Bangladesh Ltd (CPGCBL) in Cox’s Bazar, financed by JICA, with a targeted implementation time of 2021 and the 1320 MW Paira Coal-based Power Pant taken under Bangladesh-China joint venture.
The North-West Power Generation Company Ltd (NWPGCL) of Bangladesh and CMC of China has got engaged to implement the 1320 MW Paira coal-fired project in Patuakhali. They are 1320 MW Pekua power plant of EGCB-MITSUI joint venture (implementation target: 2023), PDB’s 1200 MW Moheshkhali coal-fired power plant (2024), 1320 MW Moheshkhali coal-fired power plant (2022), 1320 MW Ashuganj power plant (2021), 1200 MW coal-fired power plant of CPGCL-SEMCROP (2023) and LNG-based combined cycle power plant of Reliance Group of India (2023). And the 1600 MW nuclear power plant is scheduled to be implemented by 2030.
136 businessmen to receive CIP cards today
The government will award commercially important person (CIP) cards to 136 businessmen today (Monday) for their extraordinary performances in their respective fields in 2015, reports BSS. Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed will hand over the CIP cards among the winners at a function at a city hotel. Out of the 136 businessmen, 94 will receive the status for outstanding performances in exports while 42 others will get the status under the ex-officio category of different business chambers and trade bodies.
Indo-Bangla Pharma’s IPO gets 34 times higher subscription
The initial public offering (IPO) lottery draw of Indo-Bangla Pharmaceuticals will be held on September 11. The event will be held at 10:30 am at the auditorium of the Institution of Engineers Bangladesh (IEB) in Dhaka. After the lottery draw, the results will be published on the websites of Dhaka and Chittagong stock exchanges, issue managers and the company. The Indo-Bangla Pharma will raise a fund worth Tk 200 million by issuing 20 million ordinary shares at an offer price of Tk 10 each under the fixed price method. The IPO subscription of the company was held between August 09 and August 16 last. The company’s IPO is oversubscribed by more than 34 times as the company received Tk 6.84 billion against the public issue of Tk 200 million. The Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC) approved the company’s IPO proposal on October 3 last year. The company will utilise 29.29 per cent of the IPO proceeds for construction and other civil works, 62.36 per cent for purchasing machineries and 8.35 per cent for bearing the IPO expenses, according to the IPO prospectus. As per the financial statement for the year ended on June 30, 2016, the company’s net asset value (NAV) per share and earnings per share (EPS) are Tk 11.63 and Tk 2.62 respectively. The company’s pre-IPO paid-up capital is Tk 730 million and authorised capital is Tk 1.0 billion. AFC Capital, EBL Investments and CAPM Advisory are working together as issue manager of the IPO.
Lending thru’ agent banking on the rise
Lending through agent banking grew 12.32 percent to Tk 137.32 crore in April-June compared to a quarter ago with Bank Asia leading the pack. Bank Asia alone lent Tk 129 crore, which accounted for 94 percent of the total loans given via the agent banking outlets. The six banks lend and accept deposits alongside providing other services under the platform while the rest of the 17 licensees have focused on collecting deposits and other services so far. The central bank issued the agent banking guideline in 2013 but the licensees started full-fledged operations in 2016. Through the window, Bank Asia, one of the pioneers in agent banking, disburses loans ranging from Tk 20,000 to Tk 20 lakh and has set a target to increase the loan portfolio to Tk 250 crore by December this year. The bank offers nearly 4 percent interest to depositors and 2 percent commission to agents, while lending at 9 percent to 13 percent on major products. Latest financial indicators showed that agent banking is on the right track as deposit collection through the service stood at Tk 2,013 crore in April-June, up 23.19 percent from a quarter ago. Seventeen banks have a combined 17.64 lakh accounts as of June, up from 14.56 lakh three months ago. There are 3,588 agents at the end of the second quarter, up 11.56 percent from the first quarter of 2018.
Local and Global Stock Indices *
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