Important Business News Extracts September 25 2016
Banks’ deposits soar despite small returns
Banks’ deposits grew by a handsome amount last fiscal year despite small returns further pared down by inflation. Deposits grew 14.1% to BDT 8,583.3 billion in the year to June 30, whereas the weighted average interest rate on deposits fell about 1.2% during the period. The interest rate was only 5.5% in June, whereas inflation then was below 6%. This means, if inflation is taken into account, the savers are not getting any returns against their deposits. People have been depositing their money with banks as they do not have any better schemes to park their funds in, said a central bank official. Over the last fiscal year, deposits with the state-owned commercial banks grew 16.4%, private banks 13.8% and foreign banks 8.2%, according to central bank statistics.
Thrust on financing power projects through stock market
The brokers association of the premier bourse will hold a program today (Sunday) to highlight the importance of the capital market for financing the country’s power projects. The leaders of the DSE Brokers Association said the program will mainly focus on two issues along with discussing overall potentiality of the capital market for financing the power projects. Nasrul Hamid, state minister for power, energy and mineral resources, will attend the program as chief guest, whereas M. Khairul Hossain, chairman of the securities regulator, will remain present as special guest. The program titled ‘Financing Power Projects of Bangladesh through Capital Market’ will be held at a city club. Ahasanul Islam Titu, president of the DSE Brokers Association, said at the program they would put press on logical distribution share of the Titas Gas along with discussing the ways of raising local fund for the power projects.
Traffic Congestion: Tk 20,000cr loss to economy a year
Traffic congestion in the capital eats up around Tk 20,000 crore a year, an expert said yesterday, quoting a government report. Some 32 lakh business hours are also lost to the curse every day. Prof Akter Mahmud of Jahangirnagar University’s Urban and Regional Planning department made the comments, citing the Revised Strategic Transport Plan (RSTP) of 2016, at a programme in the capital’s LGED auditorium. Power and Participation Research Centre (PPRC), an independent think-tank, and state-owned Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics jointly organised the two-day event, titled “Urban Poverty: Challenges and Solutions Conference”, in partnership with the World Bank and the UNDP. Prof Mahmud presented a paper on the challenges of mass transport during the day’s second session titled “Urban Poverty: Access to Services”. The session was chaired by Prof Sekandar Khan, vice-chancellor of the East Delta University.
The government has made a major shift from annual estimates to quarterly ones in conducting this year’s household income and expenditure survey (HIES), a top official of Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics said yesterday. Also, division-level estimates will be expanded to district-level estimates, said Dipankar Roy, project director of the survey, BBS. “This is a major shift to understand poverty at regional level,” Roy said at a programme styled ‘Urban poverty: Challenges and solutions conference’, held at the LGED auditorium in Dhaka. Power and Participation Research Centre, an independent think-tank and state-owned BBS jointly organised the two-day event in partnership with the World Bank and United Nations Development Programme. Mustafa K Mujeri, executive director of Institute for Inclusive Finance and Development, chaired the session. Urban areas of four divisions — Dhaka, Chittagong, Khulna and Rajshahi — are further stratified into ‘urban’ and ‘city corporation’ strata to capture variability of city samples efficiently in the upcoming HIES, Roy said. Quoting the preliminary results of a survey on slums in Dhaka city, Monica Yanez-Pagans of the WB’s poverty global practice department said non-monetary dimensions are the main reasons for poverty in urban slums instead of monetary ones.
The number of urban poor in Bangladesh rose about 33 percent to eight million between 1992 and 2010, the World Bank said yesterday. However, the number of rural poor decreased from 55 million to 46 million during the period, said Ming Zhang, sector manager for urban South Asia at the WB. The quality of life of the urban poor is also worse than that of the rural poor, he said in his presentation at the inaugural of a two-day international conference on urban poverty. The Power and Participation Research Centre (PPRC) and Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) jointly organised the programme in the city’s LGED auditorium in partnership with the WB and United Nations Development Programme.
China proposes feasibility study on free-trade agreement with Bangladesh:
Dhaka sees little benefit from trade pact China has proposed a joint feasibility study on a bilateral free-trade agreement (FTA) to be signed with Bangladesh. Trade officials in Dhaka, however, find such pact not so beneficial to the country, officials said. In a recent letter to the ministry of commerce (MoC) the Chinese embassy in Dhaka requested the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for launching feasibility study on the proposed trade pact. In the draft MoU China said the feasibility study should be comprehensive and cover sectors of common interests. A senior trade official told the FE the issue of FTA with China was discussed in a meeting last month at the MoC. The meeting concluded with the opinion that Bangladesh would not sign a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with any country until 2025, before losing facilities it enjoy as a least developed country (LDC). He said signing FTA with China will cause a significant revenue loss for Bangladesh that imports substantial volume of goods from the former.
Bharat Petroleum seeks higher premium for diesel export to Bangladesh:
Proposes to use lorries pending pipeline building India has proposed to export lorry-loads of diesel to Bangladesh from Numaligarh refinery of the state-run Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL) on a regular basis, pending a joint pipeline. Officials said BPCL recently sent in a proposal to Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC) on supply of around 5,000 metric tons (mt) of diesel per month by tank lorry from Siliguri. A senior BPC official said the exporter sought a premium of USD 8.3 per barrel to Mean of Platts Arab Gulf (MoPAG) diesel assessments on cost-and-freight (CFR) basis meaning the price would be above USD 8.3 per barrel from the international benchmark price of this fuel oil. BPC has yet to decide on the diesel import on tank lorry from the Numaligarh refinery in the northeastern Indian state of Assam, said the official. He said the premium would be a crucial issue in taking decision on import of diesel from the BPCL. The petroleum corporation, meanwhile, imported some 2,200mt diesel by rail from the Numaligarh refinery in March under a ‘goodwill gesture’. BPCL had supplied the consignment of diesel, having 0.03% sulphur content, at Parbatipur inside Bangladesh. BPC had to pay a premium of USD 7.0 per barrel to MoPAG diesel assessments on CFR basis to the Indian petroleum corporation.
Major Currencies Exchange Rates Movement in Last Seven Days
*CURRENCIES AND COMMODITIES ARE TAKEN FROM BLOOMBERG.
ABOUT DHAKA BANK
Dhaka Bank has truly cherished and brought into focus the heritage and history of Dhaka and Bangladesh from Mughal outpost to modern metropolis. Most of its presentation, publications, brand initiatives, delivery channels, calendars and financial manifestations bear Bank’s commitment to this attachment.