Bank Asia opens Central Forex Reporting Hub-Gulshan

Bank Asia

MNA Business Desk: Bank Asia Ltd inaugurated Central Foreign Exchange Reporting Hub-Gulshan for its Dhaka North Zone Branches. From now onwards, customers will enjoy specialized services in foreign trade related transaction and related reporting will be faster, secured and error-free. Md. Arfan Ali, President & Managing Director of the Bank, inaugurated the hub at Tejgaon Link Road branch of the Bank on Tuesday. Mohammad Borhanuddin and Md. Sazzad Hossain, DMDs, Md. Zia Arfin, Head of International Division, Zahirul Haque, Head of Tejgaon Link Road Branch along with other officials were present at the programme.

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Reliance-Microsoft tie-up poses threat to Amazon, Google in India


MNA Business Desk: India’s Reliance Industries Ltd Monday announced a partnership with Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform, in a move that deepens the offerings of its Jio telecoms unit while posing a direct challenge to rival cloud services providers such as and Alphabet’s Google (GOOGL.O), reports Reuters. As part of the 10-year alliance, Jio will build data centers across India that will be hosted on Microsoft’s Azure cloud, Reliance Chairman Mukesh Ambani told shareholders at the company annual shareholders’ meeting. “We now have the capability to develop truly India-native solutions, including speech recognition and natural language understanding for all major ...

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Merchants to keep rawhide sales suspended until Sunday


MNA Business Desk: Tannery owners have prepared to buy rawhide at the request of the government to keep the market calm, but a decision of the hide and skin merchants to refrain from selling to the tanners has added a new twist to the crisis. Bangladesh Hide and Skin Merchants Association took the decision in a meeting in Dhaka on Saturday, saying they will not resume trade with the tanners until they pay dues. The association’s President Mohammad Delwar Hossain could not specify the dues but said it was more than Tk 4 billion accumulated since 2012. “Everyone in today’s ...

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Asian shares rebound after volatile Wall Street day

Wall Street

MNA Business Desk: Asian stocks rebounded Thursday after Wall Street eked out a gain following volatility fueled by concern fallout from the US-Chinese trade war will spread. Market benchmarks in Shanghai, Tokyo and Hong Kong all advanced, recovering some of their losses following three days of anxiety over the decline of China’s yuan against the dollar. Investors were rattled Wednesday by a wave of interest rate cuts by central banks in India, Thailand and New Zealand. That adds to rate cuts since May in Australia, South Korea and the Philippines in response to fear U.S.-Chinese trade tension will dent global ...

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BTRC cancels licenses of 124 VOIP Service Providers


MNA Business Desk: Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) cancelled licenses of 124 Voice over Internet Protocol Service Providers (VSPs). Zakir Hossain Khan, Senior Assistant Director of BTRC, said a letter in this regard, issued on August 5, was sent to the authorities concerned. Of the VSPs, 106 failed to pay government dues and renew licenses in time. Licenses of 18 other VSPs were not renewed as they failed to properly submit applications. The VSPs have been asked to clear the dues within a month.

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BB circular soon for implementing single-digit interest rates


MNA Business Desk: The Bangladesh Bank will issue a circular immediately asking the scheduled banks to ensure single-digit interest rates on both lending and deposit. Finance Minister A H M Mustafa Kamal made the announcement after a meeting with chairmen and managing directors of the different scheduled banks at the central bank headquarters in the city on Sunday. The BB circular will ask the scheduled banks to bring down the interest rates on lending and deposit to 9.0 per cent and 6.0 per cent respectively. Kamal informed that sixteen banks, including seven state-own banks, have already charged single-digit lending rate ...

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BD likely to become second largest recipient of Japanese assistance


MNA Business Desk: Bangladesh is likely to be the second largest recipient of Japanese assistance after India in the current Japanese fiscal year which starts from April 01. In last Japanese fiscal, Bangladesh was the third Japanese ODI recipient while some 270 Japanese companies are currently doing businesses in Bangladesh. “Japan appreciates the outcomes and is looking forward for stronger trade and commerce ties between Dhaka and Tokyo,” said a senior official of Japanese foreign ministry. “The Japanese government is happy and proud of that,” Deputy Press Secretary of Japanese foreign ministry Jun Saito said while talking to a small ...

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Kamal hopes to recover embezzled bank money


MNA Business Desk: Finance Minister A H M Mustafa Kamal said he will recover the entire volume of money, embezzled from banks by various conglomerates like Hallmark Group. “My standpoint is still the same. We will recover all those (money),” he said when his attention was drawn to this regard. Mr Kamal was briefing newsmen after a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Public Procurement at Bangladesh Secretariat in the capital on Wednesday. “You know, meantime, Bismillah Group has said it will run its business, and pay back the loans taken from banks.” The minister said every businessman will be ...

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Biman makes Tk 2.72b profit in FY19


MNA Business Desk: Biman Bangladesh Airlines has made a breakthrough in last 2018-19 fiscal year by making profit of Taka 2.72 billion. “We made the profit as a result of brining some positive changes in the (Biman’s) management,” said state minister for civil aviation and tourism M Mahbub Ali at a press conference at the ministry on Wednesday. He thanked initiatives of making full automation of Biman ticketing system and on-time performance as reasons of making profit. Biman’s expenditure was Taka 55.19 billion against its income of Taka 57.91billion, resulting a net profit of Taka 2.72 billion in 2018-2019 fiscal, ...

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5% tax for up to 5lac investment in savings certificates


MNA Business Desk: Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal has said five per cent tax at source will be applicable from July for investment of up to Tk 500,000 in all types of savings certificates. “We’ll take tax at source at 5 per cent rate against all types of savings certificates, including family savings certificates, up to Tk 500,000 and an SRO will be issued soon in this regard making it effective from July 1, 2019,” the minister said. Mentioning that the existing scheme for the pensioners would remain intact, Kamal said that the tax rate would be 10 per cent ...

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Govt mulls revamping postal system to boost revenue


MNA Business Desk: The government has drafted a master plan to modernize the postal system aiming to improve the services and give a boost to revenue collection. Although the department has seen a gradual and steady rise in its revenue earning, it is still almost half of its expenditure. In 2016-17 fiscal, for example, the revenue earning was Tk 3.74 billion but the expenditure was Tk 8.37 billion. In the following year, the collection increased to Tk 4.05 billion but so did the expenditure – to Tk 8.41 billion. By the last fiscal, the revenue earning rose to Tk 4.45 ...

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$1.0t dream budget before 2034: Kamal


MNA Business Desk: Finance minister AHM Mustafa Kamal said on Thursday the size of the country’s annual budget would stand at $1.0 trillion even before 2034. “Such a $1.0-trillion budget is our dream and we’ll reach there…,” he said. Mr Kamal was speaking at the closing ceremony of a two-day ‘Good Project Implementation Forum’ hosted by the Manila-based Asian Development Bank (ADB). The programme was held at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre in the capital, Dhaka. Currently, the size of the fiscal budget is less than Tk 5.0 trillion or more than $59 billion. Mr Kamal said Bangladesh, in the meantime, ...

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China and US trade negotiators to meet in Shanghai July 30-31


MNA Business Desk: Lead negotiators for China and the United States will meet in Shanghai on Tuesday for two days in the next round of trade talks, China’s commerce ministry confirmed. It would mark the first face-to-face meeting between US and Chinese trade teams since presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping agreed at a G20 summit in Japan to revive talks to end their year-long trade war. The governments of the world’s largest economies have levied billions of dollars of tariffs on each other’s imports, disrupted global supply chains and shaken financial markets in their dispute over how China does ...

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DSEX slumps below 5,000-mark in early trading


MNA Business Desk: The key index of the premier bourse slumped below 5,000-mark in early trading on Monday after 31 months as investors mostly on selling spree, fearing further fall. Following the previous day’s steep fall, the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) and the Chittagong Stock Exchange (CSE) opened on negative note amid low trading activities. Within first 15 minutes of trading, the key index of the prime bourse fell 30 points while the CSE All Share Price Index (CASPI) of port city’s bourse lost 65 points at 10:45am. After 30 minutes of trading, the DSEX fell more than 72 points ...

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Cheap labor edge won’t last long, Planning Commission warns local firms


MNA Business Desk: With Bangladesh heading towards achieving the middle-income country status, local enterprises must find alternative path to stay competitive in the global market, the Planning Commission said. “In the unfolding industrial universe of the future, Bangladesh firms will face stark reality that competitive advantage founded on low labor cost cannot be guaranteed for all time,” a draft of the second Perspective Plan of Bangladesh (2021-2041), prepared by the Commission noted. The report also said local companies will have to focus on innovation to maintain competitive edge instead of relying on traditional advantages that have paid off so far. ...

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Exclusive hotel rates for Emirates passengers across UAE


MNA Business Desk: Airline giant Emirates has come up with lucrative offers for its passengers traveling to and through Dubai — attractive summer rates in some of the UAE’s most prestigious hotels. Customers who purchase an Emirates ticket and travel from now until 30 September 2019 can enjoy the exclusive rates in any of the properties within Accor, Armani Hotel Dubai, Emaar Hospitality Group, and Marriot during their stay in the UAE, says a press release received on Wednesday. The hotels offer up to 35 per cent off and other benefits during the said period. Passengers, however, must present a ...

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Robust financial sector can be fourth driver of BD economy: ADB


MNA Business Desk: Bangladesh needs to be serious to get the fourth pillar for its growing economy giving much importance to financial sector development to successfully make the country one of the top 20 economies of the world, says Asian Development Bank (ADB). “Financial sector development can be the fourth pillar of the Bangladesh economy,” said ADB Country Director Manmohan Parkash in an interview with UNB noting that Bangladesh economy is largely driven by domestic consumption, remittance and trade. He said preparing a 10-year roadmap for financial sector development based on three pillars of financial integration, fiscal transparency and financial ...

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Onion prices to stabilize in two weeks: Commerce Minister


MNA Business Desk: Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi on Tuesday said the price of onion will come down by the end of July. “Price of a number of essential commodities including onion, ginger and garlic are high due to the damage of crops during the monsoon. Besides, the import of onion, ginger and garlic was suspended from India and China,” he said after a meeting with deputy commissioners (DCs) at the Secretariat. “Onion prices will stabilise in 15 days,” he said. Replying to a question, the minister said a directive was given to the DCs to take necessary steps to prevent ...

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China-BD joint venture company to invest $1.46m in Ishwardi EPZ


MNA Business Desk: A China-Bangladesh joint venture company, M/S Golden Ocean Limited, will invest $1.46 million to establish a garment accessories industry in Ishwardi Export Processing Zone. In this regard, Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority (BEPZA) and M/s Golden Ocean Limited signed an agreement at BEPZA complex in the city, reports BSS on Monday quoting a press release. Member (Investment Promotion) of BEPZA Zillur Rahman and Director of M/s Golden Ocean Limited Amin Nargis signed the agreement on behalf of their respective organisations. The company will produce annually 65 million yards of elastic, ribbon, shoelaces, folder elastic and jacquard elastic, ...

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Stocks keep losing Sunday amid low confidence


MNA Business Desk: Stocks witnessed yet another bearish session on Sunday as worried investors continued their selling spree on major sectors’ shares. DSEX, the prime index of the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE), went down by 42.80 points or 0.81 per cent to finish at 5,179, lowest in the two-and-a-half months low. Market analysts said the government’s move to liquidate People’s Leasing and Financial Services (PLFS), the telecom regulator’s strict stance towards Grameenphone coupled with the gas price hike continued to prompt investors to sell-offs. The DS30 index, comprising blue chips, also lost 4.42 points to finish at 1,853. The DSE ...

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Advance Tax puts importers in a tight spot


MNA Business Desk: Importers said they have been bleeding after the slapping of a 5.0 per cent advance tax (AT) on imports, effective from July 01. Many importers said they require extra money to pay it at a time when the banking sector is facing liquidity crunch. Liquid assets of the banks plunged by Tk 175.3 billion last June to Tk 2.5 trillion, according to Bangladesh Bank. According to importers, this is creating an uneven competition in the economy as some privileged zones/areas are enjoying multiple tax exemptions. This is a problem for those who enjoy exemptions from giving value-added ...

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Bangladesh to form body to negotiate FTA with Malaysia


MNA Business Desk: Bangladesh will form a committee to negotiate signing Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Malaysia. The information was revealed at the ‘Showcase Bangladesh-Go Global’ at the Royale Chulan Hotel in Kuala Lumpur on Thursday. Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi inaugurated the showcase as the chief guest. State Minister for Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment Imran Ahmed, Deputy Minister for International Trade and Industry (MITI) of Malaysia Dr Ong Kian Ming, Bangladesh High Commissioner to Malaysia Shahidul Islam, Acting High Commissioner of Malaysia in Dhaka Amir Farid Abu Hasan, Bangladesh Association of International Recruiting Agencies (BAIRA) President Benjir Ahmed and ...

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BIWTC to build own oil tankers by 2021


MNA Business Desk: Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation (BIWTC) will build two shallow draft oil tankers within June, 2021. Shipping Ministry secretary M Abdus Samad on Wednesday disclosed it while presiding over a meeting at his office, said a press release. The capacity of each tanker will be 400,000 litters and the corporation will build those with its own fund. High officials of the ministry and BIWTC were present at the meeting.

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Trade gap stands at $14.65b in July-May


MNA Business Desk: Country’s merchandise trade deficit with the rest of the world stood at US$14.65 billion during the first 11 months of the past fiscal year (FY19). Central bank statistics, released this week, showed that merchandise trade gap declined by around 15 per cent during the period under review. It was $17.15 billion in July-May period of the previous fiscal year (FY18). Double digit growth in export earnings and single digit growth is import payments contributed in reducing the trade gap significantly. Export earnings in July-May registered 11.45 per cent growth against 2.62 per cent increase in import, according ...

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Steps taken to make capital market vibrant: PM


MNA Business Desk: Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Monday said her government has taken various steps to ensure a vibrant capital market that will supplement its efforts to make Bangladesh a developed country by the year 2041. “Various measures are being taken to protect the interests of investors which will ensure a conducive environment for a vibrant capital market,” she said. The Prime Minister said this while inaugurating a regional seminar on ‘Financial Literacy and Investment Protection’. The Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) jointly organised the seminar at Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel here. ...

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BTRC to slash GP, Robi’s bandwidth


MNA Business Desk: The Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) has decided to reduce the bandwidth capacity Grameenphone and Robi as they failed to pay their dues to the government. Zakir Hossain Khan, Senior Assistant Director (PR) of BTRC, told UNB that 30 per cent bandwidth capacity of GP and 15 percent of Robi will be slashed as they could not clear their dues despite repeated notices. Zakir said GP, the country’s largest mobile phone operator, has Tk 125.8 billion dues to the government, including Tk 40.8 billion to the National Board of Revenue (NBR). Robi has dues of Tk 8.7 ...

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BD likely to become 25th largest economy in 10 years: PM


MNA Business Desk: Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said Bangladesh is likely to become 25th largest economy globally in 10 years. “Whatever gaps or limitations that we have, we are ready to correct those. So, we are for open regionalism,” the Prime Minister said. Sheikh Hasina made the remarks while addressing the World Economic Forum (WEF)’s Annual Meeting of the New Champions 2019 Meeting in Dalian city of China on Tuesday, reports BSS. The Prime Minister placed a five-point proposal to address the key concerns of smaller communities and weaker economies for their collective takeoff endeavors, which she felt crucial ...

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