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BB relaxes IBBL deposits ‘completely safe’




Bangladesh Bank Executive Director and Spokesperson, Md Mezbaul Haque on Sunday, December 4, said that Islami Bank Bangladesh Limited (IBBL) is very important to the state, and the bank’s depositors have nothing to worry about regarding their money which means it is safe completely safe to deposit in Islami Bank Bangladesh Limited (IBBL).

‘Those who have deposited money in this bank are completely safe. Bangladesh Bank guarantees their deposits. But there are many rumors still ongoing. A good institution cannot be hindered by rumor or otherwise,” he said.

Mazbaul said this after a meeting with the Association of Bankers Bangladesh (ABB) at Jahangir Alam Conference Hall of Bangladesh Bank on Sunday afternoon.

Bangladesh Bank fully guarantees customers’ deposits at IBBL. However, there is an ongoing investigation into whether there was any irregularity or corruption at the bank.

“We can say what happened only after investigation,” he added.

Regarding ABB’s claim that the maximum interest rate of 12 percent on consumer loans has been verbally approved, he said: “We have not issued any circular in this regard.” Consumer loan interest rates are the same as in earlier rules. But if a bank talks about 12 percent then it is advance preparation. If so, we will issue a circular.”

In reply to a question on customers withdrawing deposits from Islami Bank, as IBBL is popularly known, he said that the crisis of trust has passed. Depositors are putting money back into the bank.

Besides, the trade deficit has come down a lot, and the foreign exchange crisis will go soon.

The meeting discussed several issues including the facilitation of importers’ letters of credit (LCs) to ensure the supply of essential commodities during the upcoming Ramadan.

“This has been discussed with the MDs and CEOs of the banks. Governor Abdur Rouf Talukder has instructed the MDs to provide all kinds of assistance in the import to ensure the supply of necessities during Ramadan,” Mezbaul said.

He further said that the opening of unnecessary LCs is closed. However, it has been suggested to keep the margin rate at a minimum level in the case of import financing of essential commodities during Ramadan.

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Banking transactions to operate 5hrs during Ramadan




Bangladesh Bank (BB) has set the banking transaction time from 9:30 am to 2:30 pm and the banking office time from 9:30 am to 4:00 pm during the holy month of Ramadan.

The central bank issued a circular in this regard on Wednesday (15 March).

The circular stated that all scheduled banks operating in the country will be open from 9:30 am to 4 pm during the holy month of Ramadan.

Banking transactions are normally conducted from 10 am to 4 pm. Bank office hours are from 10 am to 6 pm.

The circular said that the schedule will revert to its original status after the holy month of Ramadan.

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BGMEA, BKMEA for lowering tax at source at 0.5p




BGMEA: Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association and the Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BKMEA) on Tuesday (7th March) urged the government to reduce the tax at source on export of RMG items at 0.5 percent from the existing 1 percent and thus keeping it for the next five years.

The leaders of the two major associations also demanded of the government to waive the 10 percent income tax on cash support against exports as well as make the corporate tax at 10 percent for the green RMG factories.

The leaders of BGMEA, BKMEA and Bangladesh Textiles Mills Association (BTMA) raised such demands at a pre-budget meeting with the National Board of Revenue (NBR) held at the NBR Bhaban in the capital’s Agargaon area.

Presided over NBR Chairman Abu Hena Md Rahmatul Muneem, leaders of BGMEA, BKMEA and BTMA attended the meeting.

Explaining the rationality of their demands, BGMEA President Faruque Hassan said that the foreign buyers have reduced the work orders due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine war.

He said although the exports have increased in terms of value, the volume of exportable items has reduced. Under the circumstances, Faruque proposed for re-fixing the tax at source at the previous 0.50 percent to face the evolving challenges and thus keeping such facility for the next five years.

However, the BGMEA president demanded of the NBR to increase the number of authorized economic operators (AEO) to ensure speedy shipment and unloading of goods.

The other notable demands from BGMEA include giving VAT exemptions to some 12 RMG related firms to increase the export competitiveness, resolving the HS code-related complexities, reduction of duty on import of washing dry machines and fire extinguishing equipment.

Echoing the demand of BGMEA to reduce tax at source against exports, BKMEA executive president Mohammad Hatem urged the NBR to reconsider the issues related to tax at source.

Hatem also requested the NBR to exempt the RMG factories on mandatory submission of zero VAT returns, fixing the duty and VAT at zero percent on import of chemicals for setting up solar panels and ETPs.

The leaders of BTMA proposed for waiving all types of duty and VAT at import stage on all types of fibres including recycled fibre and man-made fibre.

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BD recieved over Tk 16k crores remittance last Feb




Bangladesh received inward remittance of Tk 16k crores in February. Though the inward remittance flow decreased in February compared to January, the overall remittance flow rose in the first 8 months of the current fiscal year.

According to Bangladesh Bank (BB) in the first 8 months, Bangladesh received $14.01 billion in remittance, which is $574.86 million more than the same period of last fiscal year. In FY 2021-22, Bangladesh received $13.43 billion in remittances in the first 8 months.

The foreign exchange markets of Bangladesh are being stable thanks to remittance inflow, and the forex reserves of Bangladesh bank stood at $32.3 billion on March 1, 2023.

The expatriates, freelancers, and skilled professionals of Bangladeshi have contributed to the country by earning foreign exchange while the central bank struggling with LC liabilities to import essential commodities and industrial raw materials, the sector insiders say.

Bank authorities said many import payments are being deferred due to the dollar crisis. For this, dollars coming from expatriates are being bought at a higher price than the fixed rate.

As a result, expatriate income increased. If the price limit of the dollar is removed, the crisis will go away, they say.

Bangladesh Bank spokesperson Mesbaul Haque told to the news media that in order to increase remittance inflow, the central bank has increased the exchange rate of US dollars for remittance.

In addition to a 2.5 percent hassle-free incentive for remittance, several banks also provide additional incentives to attract foreign exchange, he said.

Banks will not cut any charge or fee for sending remittances through legal channels, he said.

Bangladesh Bank says that more than 40 percent of remittance of expatriate income is sent to the country through hundi.

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