Goldman Sachs chief apologizes to Malaysia over 1MDB scandal

Goldman Sachs

MNA Business Desk: Goldman Sachs new boss has apologised to Malaysia for the role an ex-partner played in the corruption scandal at one of the country’s wealth funds. However, chief executive David Solomon also distanced the bank from the scheme, which saw billions embezzled from the state development fund, 1MDB. He said Goldman, which had helped to raise money for the fund, had been deceived about details of the deals. Malaysia filed criminal charges against Goldman last month. It accused the investment bank of helping to misappropriate money intended for the fund. The US and other countries are also investigating ...

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White House considering Indra Nooyi as World Bank chief


MNA Business Desk: The White House is considering Indra K Nooyi, the former chief executive officer of PepsiCo, for the position of World Bank president, according to several people familiar with the process, The New York Times reports. Nooyi, who stepped down from her role at PepsiCo last August after leading the company for 12 years, has been courted as an administration ally by Ivanka Trump, the president’s eldest daughter, who is playing a role in the selection of a nominee. The decision-making process for the top post at the World Bank is fluid and in its initial stages, and ...

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Japan willing to invest in BD IT sector


MNA Business Desk: Japan is willing to invest in the IT sector of Bangladesh and would continue to support the country in key development areas particularly in implementing the Vision 2021. Toshimitsu Motegi, visiting Minister-in-Charge of Economic Revitalization of Japan, expressed his keenness during a courtesy call on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at her office on Tuesday, reports BSS. PM’s press secretary Ihsanul Karim briefed reporters after the meeting. Japan is a great development partner of Bangladesh since independence which was achieved by Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the premier said. Japanese minister congratulated Sheikh Hasina for ...

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RMG workers reject revised wage structure


MNA Business Desk: Five garment workers were injured in a clash with police as they staged demonstrations in Dhaka’s Savar on Monday rejecting the revised wage structure. Several thousand workers started the demonstrations on the highway in Narsinghopur area of Ashulia at 9:00 am and tried to put up a barricade. Later, a chase and counter-chase took place between the RMG workers and police. Several factories were declared shut for today following the agitation, according to UNB news agency. Amid the widespread protests by RMG workers for the last few days over the disparity in their new wage structure, the ...

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BGMEA threatens to shut factories amid unrest


MNA Business Desk: The apparel sector’s apex body – BGMEA – has threatened to shut all the garment factories for an indefinite period unless the agitating workers join their respective workplaces from tomorrow (Monday). Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) president Md Siddiqur Rahman made the threat at a press briefing held at its headquarters in Dhaka city on Sunday. “If you (workers) do not work, you will get no wages. No work, no pay,” he said, adding: “And factories will remain closed in line with the labour law provision of 13 (1) for an indefinite period.” The government-formed ...

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50 RMG factories suspend operation amid workers’ protest


MNA Business Desk: Continuous protests by readymade garment (RMG) workers demanding implementation of the government-announced wage board, which continued for the fifth continuous day, has forced at least 50 factories to suspend operation. According to a UNB report clashes with police in the capital, Ashulia and Gazipur has left left dozens of workers injured. RMG workers took to the streets in the morning on Saturday and put up barricades at Mirpur-1 and Ansar Camp areas, halting vehicular movement. They also demonstrated at Shewrapar, Kazipara, and Begum Rokeya Sarani. Police said the barricades were withdrawn around afternoon. In Gazipur, hundreds of ...

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BB Cyber Heist: Philippines jails ex-bank manager


MNA Business Desk: Philippine court on Thursday held a former bank manager guilty on eight counts of money laundering, the first conviction in one of the world’s largest cyber heists, in which $81 million was stolen from Bangladesh’s central bank nearly three years ago, reports Reuters. The regional court sentenced Maia Deguito, a former branch manager at Manila-based Rizal Commercial Banking Corp (RCBC), to a jail term ranging from 32 to 56 years, with each count carrying four to seven years. She was also ordered to pay a total fine of about $109 million. In February 2016, unknown criminals used ...

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Emirates declares special fares on travel from BD


MNA Business Desk: Emirates has come up with special limited time offers for passengers travelling from Bangladesh to 157 destinations across its global network. The special fares will be applicable for booking between January 8 and 21 for travel between January 21 and November 30, 2019, says a press release received on Wednesday. All inclusive return fare in Economy class travel for Dubai starts from BDT. 50,502, for London and New York from BDT. 80,371, for Rome from BDT. 68,972. As for business class travel, all inclusive fare for Dubai starts from BDT. 193,856, for New York from BDT. 362,752, ...

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Lamudi acquired by Bproperty in Bangladesh


MNA Business Desk: Bproperty, a real estate marketplace, announced that it has acquired Lamudi, another online marketplace for property in Bangladesh. Under the deal, the current services of will be wound down with Lamudi’s consumers and real estate developers being serviced through, according to a statement issued on Tuesday. Mark Nosworthy, CEO of bproperty, said: “This deal represents a milestone within real estate in Bangladesh.” “Bangladesh requires an independent real estate company whose sole objective is to ensure that a secure and complete real estate transaction is finalised.”

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BD economy 41st largest in 2019


MNA Business Desk: Bangladesh is the 41st largest economy in the world in 2019, according to a UK-based think tank. It is up by twp steps from last year, when the country was ranked 43rd largest economy, the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) said in a report. The report forecast that Bangladesh would emerge as 36th largest economy in 2023, 27th in 2028 and 24th in 2033. “We expect annual rates of GDP growth (in Bangladesh) to average 7.0% between 2018 and 2033. This will see the country climb 19 places in the World Economic League Table to ...

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RMG workers block Uttara road demanding minimum wage hike

Uttara road

MNA Business Desk: Hundreds of garment workers have blocked the Uttara road, barring the main thoroughfare to and from Dhaka, reported news agency. The garment workers took to the streets at around 9:00am on Sunday in the Uttara area, said Airport Police Assistant Commissioner Mizanur Rahman. They blocked the road from Azampur to Jashimuddin Road and are calling for a raise in the minimum wage and several other demands. No vehicles have been able to use the Dhaka-Mymensingh Highway due to the protest. The block on the movement of vehicles has led to heavy traffic congestion on both sides of ...

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Gold prices rise by Tk 1,516 per bhori


MNA Business Desk: The prices of all kinds of gold increased on Wednesday by Tk 1,516 per bhori, in line with the international market, Bangladesh Jewellers’ Samity (BAJUS) said in a statement, reported news agency. The latest rise comes five months after the last price hike of the precious metal in the country. In its statement, BAJUS said the price per gram of 22carat gold was set at Tk4,200, and it will be sold at Tk48,988 per bhori from Wednesday. It was sold at Tk47,472 per bhori even on Tuesday. One bhori is about 11.66 grams. As per the new ...

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Import, export resume through Hili Land Port

Hili Land Port

MNA Business Desk: After import and export was closed for four days, operations at Hili Land Port resumed on Tuesday, reported news agency. President of the importers group in Hili port Harun ur Rashid said that the operations resumed at 1pm. The laborers working at the port have already begun loading and unloading goods. He said it might take a day or two for operations to begin in full capacity. The land port was closed from December 27-31 due to the general election, weekends and bank holiday.

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Trade wars cost US, China billions


MNA Business Desk: The US-China trade war resulted in billions of dollars of losses for both sides in 2018, hitting industries including autos, technology – and above all, agriculture. Broad pain from trade tariffs outlined by several economists shows that, while specialized industries including US soybean crushing benefited from the dispute, it had an overall detrimental impact on both of the world’s two largest economies. The losses may give US President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, motivation to resolve their trade differences before a 2 March deadline, although talks between the economic superpowers could still devolve. The ...

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BB suspends mobile banking for polls


MNA Business Desk: Bangladesh Bank has suspended all kind of mobile-based financial services (MFS) for temporary basis ahead of the December 30 national election, reported news agency. All MFS providers have been asked to keep mobile-based financial services suspended from 5:00pm on December 28 to 5:00pm on December 30, the central bank said in a circular today. However, MFS can allow the individual transaction through mobile account at limited scale up to Tk 5,000 from 5:00pm on December 29 to 5:00pm on December 30, according to the circular. The decision was taken following the instruction given by the Election Commission, ...

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IPDC secures 3rd position at 18th ICAB National Award


MNA Business Desk: IPDC Finance Limited, the first financial institution of Bangladesh established in 1981, has been awarded third position under the “Financial Services Sector” category for the “Best Presented Annual Report 2017” by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Bangladesh (ICAB). Finance Minister AMA Muhith attended the award ceremony as chief guest, held on Moday at the Pan Pacific Sonargaon hotel in Dhaka, said a press release. Among others, IPDC Finance Head of Business Finance Rizwan Dawood Shams, Head of Retail Business Md Kayser Hamid, Chief Financial Officer Benozeer Ahmed, and Senior Manager of Finance and Accounts Fahmida Khan, ...

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Tripura plans tea export to Bangladesh


MNA Business Desk: Indian northeast state of Tripura is planning to export tea to Bangladesh through participating in the auction at Sreemangal in Sylhet, reported news agency. The export prospect has brightened with Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb having taken up the issue with Union Commerce Minister Suresh Prabhu, the Business Standard reported, quoting Chairman of Tripura Tea Development Corporation Ltd (TTDC) Santosh Saha. He said the chief minister of Tripura had talks with the Union minister on the Tripura government’s plan to export tea through a tea auction centre at Sreemangal, which is only 5 km from Kailashahar in ...

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Remittance likely to grow by 15.59pc this year


MNA Business Desk: The country’s inward remittance is expected to increase by 15.59 per cent in 2018 compared to that of the previous year, reported news agency. Remittance showed such an upward trend as an increasing number of workers went abroad last year, said Tasneem Siddiqui, founding chair of Refugee and Migratory Movements Research Unit (RMMRU). While presenting the report on Sunday, she said workers sent remittances worth US$ 14.34 billion during the January-November period of the current year. “If the trend continues, the amount of total inward remittances may stand at about US$ 15.64 billion in 2018,” she said, ...

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Osama Taseer elected DCCI president

Osama Taseer

MNA Business Desk: Osama Taseer has been elected president of Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) for the year 2019, reports news agency. He is going to replace Abdul Kashem Khan, who served two consecutive terms of DCCI president. Waqar Ahmad Choudhury and Imran Ahmed have been elected new senior vice president and vice president of the DCCI respectively. The new board of directors took over charge at the 57th annual general meeting (AGM) of DCCI held in its auditorium on Saturday. The newly elected directors are Ashraf Ahmed, Deen Mohammad, Enamul Haque Patwary, Md Rashedul Karim Munna and ...

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BSTI to test Johnson Baby Powder for asbestos


MNA Business Desk: Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution (BSTI) will test samples of Baby Powder by Johnson and Johnson amid worries over the product allegedly containing cancer-causing asbestos. “We have taken this matter extremely seriously. We’ll start the process of collecting samples from shops when our offices resume on Sunday,” said BSTI director SM Ishaq Ali, reports news agency. However, Bangladesh will not ban Baby Powder sales before learning of the result of the sample tests, the BSTI director said. Whether asbestos in the talc supply in J&J Baby Powder caused cancer has been the subject of litigation for years.

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Bangladesh, WB sign $500m deal to improve livestock

improve livestock

MNA Business Desk: Bangladesh on Wednesday signed a $500 million financing agreement with the World Bank to improve livestock and dairy production, said a press statement. Economic relations division secretary Monowar Ahmed and acting World Bank country director Dandan Chen signed the deal on behalf of their respective sides in the city. Under the agreement, a ‘livestock and dairy development project’ will help provide better market access to 2 million household farmers and small and medium-scale agro-entrepreneurs. “The project will contribute to achieving the government’s plan to substantially increase livestock production to feed the growing population,” said Monowar Ahmed. The ...

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178 businesspersons get CIP award


MNA Business Desk: The government on Tuesday honoured 178 businesspersons with Commercially Important Person (CIP) cards for their outstanding contributions to the economy of the country in 2016, reported news agency. Of them, 137 received the cards in the export category while 41 cards were awarded to the directors of the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) in the trade category as ex-officio members. Commerce minister Tofail Ahmed handed over the CIP cards to the businesspersons for their respective companies at a ceremony held at the TCB Conference Hall in the capital city on Tuesday. While speaking ...

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Trade war buoys apparel industry in Bangladesh, Vietnam


MNA Business Desk: The trade spat between Washington and Beijing is providing a tailwind for garment production hubs like Bangladesh and Vietnam, as more companies move away from China to avoid US tariffs and sanctions, according to a report by China is the world’s largest exporter of apparel, with shipments of $158.4 billion last year, or more than 30 per cent of the global total. But that is down from around 40 per cent at the beginning of the decade, with apparel companies gradually migrating to neighboring countries with cheaper labor costs. Bangladesh is one of those alternatives. The ...

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China opens world’s first 3rd-generation nuclear project


MNA Business Desk: French energy giant EDF and its partner China General Nuclear Power Group claimed that they have powered up the world’s first next-generation EPR nuclear reactor. The Taishan 1 project has been under development for many years and is the world’s first EPR reactor — which uses a pressurised water design — to enter into commercial service, reported news age agency. The two EPR reactors at the Taishan nuclear power plant will be the most powerful in the world when fully completed and can supply 5 million Chinese users, the companies said in a press release. EPR reactors ...

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WB approves $250m to create quality jobs


MNA Business Desk: The World Bank on Thursday approved a $250 million development policy operation to help the government of Bangladesh strengthen its capacity to create more, better-paid and quality jobs in a rapidly changing environment. The Programmatic Jobs Development Policy Creditaims at supporting Bangladesh to develop a stronger policy and institutional framework to address barriers to creating more and better jobs for its citizens, including women, youth and the vulnerable population, reported news agency. Despite Bangladesh’s robust economic growth, the pace of job creation has slowed in recent years, and almost stalled in the readymade garments sector. The growth ...

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India central bank chief resigns

central bank

MNA Business Desk: The head of India’s central bank announced his resignation on Monday following a public spat with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s administration about alleged government interference. Reserve Bank of India governor Urjit Patel cited “personal reasons” for his decision but media reports have said that he was annoyed by repeated government efforts to influence central bank policy. His short statement made no mention of the rift, highlighting only what he called the RBI’s “considerable accomplishments in recent years”. Indian business dailies had reported in October and November that Modi’s government has invoked never-before-used powers to send at least ...

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National VAT Day today

National VAT Day

MNA Business Desk: The National Board of Revenue (NBR) will observe the ‘National VAT Day-2018’ today aiming to encourage people to pay the Value Added Tax (VAT) for the country’s development, reported news agency. The NBR will also observe the ‘National VAT Week-2018’ from December 10 to 15 next. The slogan of this year’s ‘VAT Day’ and ‘VAT Week’ is ‘VAT Dichhe Janogan, Desher Hochhe Unnayan’. NBR chairman M Mosharraf Hossain Bhuiyan inaugurated the day and the week at the NBR headquarters in the city. The NBR will honour the highest VAT payers in the meeting where finance minister AMA ...

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