Masatsugu Asakawa elected ADB new president

Masatsugu Asakawa

MNA Business Desk: The Asian Development Bank (ADB) announced on Monday that its Board of Governors has “unanimously elected” Masatsugu Asakawa as ADB president. Asakawa, 61, currently special advisor to Japan’s prime minister and minister of finance, will assume office as ADB’s 10th president on Jan 17, 2020. He will succeed Takehiko Nakao, who will leave office on Jan 16, 2020. Asakawa will finish the unexpired term of Nakao, which ends on Nov 23, 2021, reports Xinhua. “Asakawa’s extensive and diverse experience in international finance and development will serve ADB well in pursuing its vision of a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, ...

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Govt to form panel to ensure single digit interest rate


MNA Business Desk: The government is set to form a panel with the task of bringing interest rates down to a single digit. Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal gave the information after a meeting with leaders of the banking sector on Sunday, reports “A seven-member committee led by a deputy governor of the central bank will be formed by the end of the day,” said Kamal. The panel will consist of chairmen and managing directors of public and private banks, said the finance minister. “The committee will submit a strategy on reducing the interest rate to the governor of ...

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Taka losing value against dollar


MNA Business Desk: The local currency has depreciated by Tk 1.0 against the US dollar so far this year in the inter-bank foreign exchange market as demand for the greenback grew. The dollar was quoted at Tk 84.90 each in the inter-bank forex market on November 27 against Tk 83.90 on January 02 this calendar year, according to the market operators. The demand for the greenback is gradually increasing, mostly driven by higher import payment, particularly for intermediate goods, oil and capital machinery for power plants. The Bangladesh Taka’s erosion was equally blamed on the falling trend in the export ...

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PDB proposes 23pc hike in bulk power prices


MNA Business Desk: The Bangladesh Power Development Board or BPDB has proposed to the energy regulator to increase bulk electricity tariff by 23.27 per cent per unit to trim its losses. The state-owned agency made the proposal at the public hearing on bulk power tariff and transmission cost, held by the Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission or BERC on Thursday. However, after reviewing the proposal, the BERC said the price can be increased by 19.5 per cent per unit to adjust transmission costs. At the hearing, BPDB General Manager (commercial operation) Md Kausar Ameer Ali said that the bulk electricity transmission ...

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BASIC Bank in deeper trouble


MNA Business Desk: The scam-hit state-run BASIC Bank is finding it hard to procure funds from depositors, officials have said. Its battered image is thought to be the number one problem. BASIC Bank managing director Md Rafiqul Alam wrote to finance ministry last Wednesday seeking funds as well as support to boost bank’s public image. He has sought government intervention to help remove roadblocks to the bank making a comeback. According to the officials, the bank does desperately need to find ways to improve its deposit base as it has long been facing problem in this connection. The bank has ...

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BB brings simplification in online transactions

international cards

MNA Business Desk: The Bangladesh Bank (BB) has waived the formalities of online transaction authorisation form (OTAF) for online payments through international cards. The central bank issued a new notice on Sunday over the matter after it came under intense criticism for introducing the OTAF, report BSS and “To bring further simplification in online transactions, it has been decided to waive OTAF formalities for online payments abroad through international cards,” according to the BB circular. Authorities had introduced the online transaction authorisation form to stop illegitimate online payments to participate in gambling or stock trading. In this context, Sunday’s ...

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Online transactions hampered by new credit card rule


MNA Business Desk: A new rule requiring customers to obtain a certificate before completing a transaction online is causing people a lot of grief with businessmen in the IT sector suffering in particular. Bangladesh Bank (BB) issued the circular last week according to which, customers must seek authorisation to make online purchases using foreign currency by filling up a form and submitting it to their respective banks. The measure was adopted to prevent the purchase of cryptocurrency online, lottery tickets, gambling and misuse of the international credit card, according to the central bank. But bankers and customers have slated the ...

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Send more remittances: FM to expats in UAE


MNA Business Desk: Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen has encouraged the Bangladeshi expatriates in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to send more remittance to Bangladesh through formal channel as the government is providing lucrative incentives to the remitters. He made the call while inaugurating the smart NID card and voter enrolment services at the Bangladesh Embassy in Abu Dhabi on Monday. At the beginning of the programme, Bangladesh Ambassador to the UAE Muhammad Imran briefed the audience about the smart NID card and voter enrolment services in Abu Dhabi Mission. The Foreign Minister highlighted different success stories of Bangladesh ...

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Onion price starts falling; wholesalers receive backlash


MNA Business Desk: As onion price started falling with the government’s move to import the produce and arrival of the locally-produced ones in the market, the wholesalers in the capital were seen passing idle time on Sunday due to poor turnout of retailers fearing losses. A number of wholesalers said retailers were not coming to buy onion apprehending that the price of the vegetable will drop rapidly after the arrival of cargo planes with the imported onion. Some of them said they have already suffered losses due to the downtrend in the onion price. Md Shahidul Islam, a wholesaler at ...

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1st air cargo with Egyptian onion arrives Tuesday


MNA Business Desk: The first consignment of onion from Egypt will be flown to Bangladesh on Tuesday, the Commerce Ministry said Saturday. S Alam Group is importing the onion from Egypt. On Friday, the government announced that onions are being flown from abroad on emergency basis to keep the local market stable. The prices of onion, a common ingredient in Bangladeshi kitchen, have been on the rise since India banned its export in late September. Various measures taken by the government could not bring down the prices which hit the Tk 250 per kilogram mark on Friday. The Trading Corporation ...

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Onion price hits record high at Tk 220 per kg


MNA Business Desk: Local onion price soars to an all time high at Tk 200 to Tk 220 per kg in different retail markets across the capital on Thursday, according to traders and consumers. Imported onion was being sold at Tk 170 to Tk 190 per kg. Members of both the treasury and opposition benches in parliament on Thursday shared their concerns over the exorbitant prices of onion in the domestic market while an opposition MP demanded that its price manipulators be put in crossfire as drug peddlers were done to set an example. Jatiya Party MP Mujibul Haque Chunnu ...

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Better logistics can help Bangladesh boost exports: WB


MNA Business Desk: Bangladesh needs to improve its transport and logistics systems to meet the needs of its growing economy and boost export growth, said a new World Bank report launched on Wednesday. The report – Moving Forward: Connectivity and Logistics to Sustain Bangladesh’s Success – was launched at a hotel in the capital. It points out that by making logistics more efficient, Bangladesh can significantly boost export growth, maintain its position as a leading ready-made garments and textile producer, and create more jobs, according to a UNB report. The report notes that congestion on roads and seaports, high logistics ...

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Emirates’ first remote check-in terminal opens in Dubai


MNA Business Desk: Emirates’ on Monday inaugurated its first remote check-in terminal – outside of the airport – to provide seamless connections for cruise passengers. Located at Port Rashid in Dubai, the Emirates check-in counters will allow passengers who are disembarking from their cruise ships to check in for their onward Emirates flight at the same facility, says a press statement received on Tuesday. Mohammed Mattar, divisional senior vice president of Emirates Airport Services, said: “Our first remote check-in facility at Port Rashid will allow cruise passengers with onward flights the freedom to explore Dubai during their short transit having ...

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Bangla Bond listed on London Stock Exchange

Bangla Bond

MNA Business Desk: The first-ever Bangladeshi Taka-denominated bond titled “Bangla Bond” was listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) on Monday. The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a sister concern of the World Bank, floated the bond, said the Bangladesh High Commission in London on Monday. Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal, Prime Minister’s Private Sector Industry and Investment Adviser Salman F Rahman and Bangladesh High Commissioner to the UK Saida Muna Tasneem attended the enlistment ceremony ‘The Ring The Bell’ event at the LSE. Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal highlighted the robust economic growth and major macro economic development in Bangladesh ...

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Cyclone ‘Bulbul’: Chattogram port activities suspended


MNA Business Desk: Chittagong Port Authority (CPA) suspended all activities on Saturday morning after great danger signal number 9 was issued for the port. All the ships were taken away to safe areas to lessen the damage by very severe cyclonic storm ‘Bulbul’ which is likely to hit the country’s coastal region this evening. The port authorities declared its own alert No 4, said Port Secretary Md Omar Faruk. Ships and small vessels were taken to the upstream of Shah Amanat Bridge while larger ships were shifted to Kutubdia and Cox’s Bazar coasts, he added. The activities at Chattogram Shah ...

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Govt moves to formulate tourism master plan in two years


MNA Business Desk: The government has taken an initiative for the first time in the country’s tourism history to formulate a ‘tourism master plan’ in next two years for proper branding of Bangladesh in front of both local and foreign tourists. State Minister for Civil Aviation and Tourism M Mahbub Ali gave the information on Wednesday while addressing at a function marking the 12th anniversary of Tourism and Hospitality Management Department of Dhaka University (DU) at its campus in Dhaka. “Our tourism products are yet to be branded for various reasons. Now time has come to brand those properly for ...

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BBF honours 79 digital campaigns with DMA


MNA Business Desk: The third edition of Digital Marketing Award honoured 79 digital campaigns through a grand award gala at a city hotel on Saturday. Winners received 1 Grand Prix award, 12 Gold awards, 16 Silver awards and 50 Bronze awards in 16 categories. An initiative of Bangladesh Brand Forum (BBF), Digital Marketing Award (DMA) 2019 was presented by Meghna Group of Industries. The award gala was attended by 500 digital marketing enthusiasts. This year, more than 500 nominations were submitted for the award, the only accolade for digital works in Bangladesh. Four jury panels shortlisted the digital works and ...

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WB praises progress of digitisation in Bangladesh


MNA Business Desk: The World Bank (WB) on Monday praised the progress of digitisation in the country. Their appreciations came during a meeting with State Minister for ICT Zunaid Ahmed Palak at the conference room of Information of Communication Division at Agargaon in the city. A 12-member high-powered delegation of WB led by Geir Haarde met with the state minister. During the meeting Palak briefed the delegation about the activities of Digital Bangladesh being implemented in line with its four pillars— development of human resources, connectivity, e-governance and industry promotion. The state minister said Bangladesh started journey towards digitisation following ...

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5th BIGTEX expo kick-off Nov 7


MNA Business Desk: A four-day “5th Bangladesh International Garment & Textile Industry Exposition (BIGTEX)” will begin on November 7 at International Convention City Bashundhara in Dhaka. Commence Miniter Tipu Munshi is expected to inaugurate the exposition at 2:30pm which will continue until November 10. RedCarpet365 Limited, the organiser of the BIGTEX expo, disclosed details about the mega exhibition at a press conference on Sunday at the Economic Reporters’ Forum (ERF) auditorium in the city. The organisers said targeting the entire Textile, Garment & Apparel industry, they are organizing four international exhibitions simultaneously at the same place – named Garment & ...

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Aviation X Lab unveiled in Dubai

Aviation X

MNA Business Desk: To innovate and create the next era of aviation and to positively impact the lives of one billion people the Aviation X Lab was unveiled at Area 2071 at Emirates Towers in Dubai recently. Area 2071 is a creative ecosystem to design the future that brings together government, creative individuals, businesses, and people from all walks of life, says a press release. Aviation X Lab establishes a long-term partnership between Emirates and Airbus, Collins Aerospace, GE Aviation, and Thales with an aim to enhance the travel experience. Telecom provider du has signed on as its digital innovation ...

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PM announces continuation of incentives in leather sector for five more years


MNA Business Desk: Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday announced continuation of incentives in leather sector for at least five more years aimed at achieving the desired export target of the leather and footwear industry. “The incentive in leather sector will be continued for at least five more years with a view to achieving the desired export target from the leather and footwear industry,” she said. The prime minister was addressing while inaugurating the third edition of three-day Bangladesh Leather Footwear and Leathergoods International Sourcing Show (BLLISS), 2019 at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC) in the city this morning. Noting ...

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Russia keen to invest in telecommunication sector


MNA Business Desk: Russia has expressed keen interest to invest in the country’s telecommunication sector for accelerating its journey towards digitization. It has also expressed willingness to extend financial and technical support to launch Bangabandhu-2 satellite. The Russian interest came at a meeting between Russian ambassador to Dhaka Alexander I Ignatov and Posts, Telecommunications and Information Technology Minister Mustafa Jabbar on Tuesday at the latter’s office in the city. A five member team of Russian satellite technology company Glavkosmos also joined the meeting led by the Russian envoy to discuss issues related to Bangabandhu-2 satellite and their interest in investing ...

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No scope of onion prices to come down before shipment arrives: Commerce Minister


MNA Business Desk: There is no scope for price of onions to come down until consignments from Egypt and Turkey arrive, said Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi on Monday. The minister also stated that 7,000-8,000 tonnes of onion from Egypt are expected to arrive by the first week of November. “The shipment of onions is expected to enter the country within the first week of November. There’s no scope for the onion price to come down until then,” he said. Talking to reporters after attending the launch event of Business Confidence Survey 2019 arranged by Business Initiative Leading Development (BUILD) at ...

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BD denim products to attract more foreign buyers


MNA Business Desk: The eleventh edition of Bangladesh Denim Expo, an international exposition to promote Bangladeshi denim goods, will focus on driving the country’s denim industry towards the direction of responsibility, organizers said on Sunday. For the first time, H&M Group, a Swedish multinational clothing-retailer, is collaborating with Bangladesh Denim Expo for its 11th edition to be held on November 5-6 at the International Convention City Bashundhara (ICCB). In the two-day exposition, a total of 100 exhibitors from 11 countries, including host Bangladesh, will take part. The other participating countries are China, Japan, Italy, India, Singapore, Brazil, Spain, Pakistan, Turkey ...

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DSE to form expert panel to check IPO prospectuses


MNA Business Desk: The securities regulator has advised the country’s premier bourse to form an expert panel to scrutinize the upcoming initial public offerings (IPO) prospectus properly. The Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC) chairman M Khairul Hossain advised the board of directors of the DSE to form the expert panel to assess the IPO prospectus of companies seeking to float IPOs, said a DSE statement. The securities regulator also assured that the commission will give approval to the IPO of a company if the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) expert panel would be satisfied with the company’s financial statements. The ...

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BD moves up eight spots in ease of doing business index

Ease of Doing Business

MNA Business Desk: Bangladesh has moved up eight spots to 168 in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business index 2020. The country’s ranking was 176 in the last year, according to a report by the World Bank Group. A total of 190 countries have been ranked in the global lender’s latest index. According to the World Bank Group, Bangladesh is among the 20 economies that have seen progress in at least three out of ten areas of the ease of doing business for the last year. The country made it bringing about three reforms during the past year, the ...

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Comprehensive framework to develop bond market drafted


MNA Business Desk: A comprehensive framework to develop the country’s bond market has been drafted by a designated working committee. Titled as ‘Comprehensive framework on the development of bond market in Bangladesh’ the draft report has also been made available to public on Monday. The government assigned nine-member working committee, headed by Md. Khurshid Alam, general manager of debt management department of Bangladesh Bank earlier submitted the report to the governor of Bangladesh Bank. The 45-page report reviewed the current status of bond market, pointed out the barriers to develop a vibrant bond market and spelled out a number of ...

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