US suspends tariffs on Chinese products


MNA Business Desk: US treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin has said the US was temporarily suspending tariffs on Chinese products after an agreement was reached to reduce the bilateral trade deficit. “We are putting the trade war on hold,” Mnuchin said on Sunday in a “Fox News Sunday” television interview. “Right now, we have agreed to put the tariffs on hold while we try to execute the framework.” In recent weeks, president Donald Trump had threatened to slap tariffs on as much as $150 billion worth of Chinese imports to force changes in China’s trade practices, to which Beijing responded by ...

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Eurozone trade surplus decline in March


MNA Business Desk: The eurozone has recorded a 26.9 billion euro surplus in trade in goods with the rest of the world in March, declined from 28.5 billion in March 2017, data from Eurostat showed. The first estimate for euro area exports of goods to the rest of the world in March decreased by 2.9 per cent compared with March 2017, while imports from the rest of the world fell by 2.5 per cent compared with March 2017, according to Eurostat, the European Union statistical agency. howevr, intra-euro area trade also fell down by 0.6 per cent compared with March ...

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China-US agree to abandon trade war


MNA Business Desk: Washington and Beijing have agreed to abandon any trade war and back off from imposing tariffs on each other, reported news agency. The announcement came after high-level talks in the US capital and followed months of tensions over what president Donald Trump has blasted as an unfair commercial relationship between the two economic giants. Vice-premier Liu He, who led Chinese negotiators in Washington said: “The two sides reached a consensus, will not fight a trade war, and will stop increasing tariffs on each other,” state-run news agency Xinhua reported Sunday. Liu called the agreement a “necessity”, but ...

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Koreans keen to invest in Bangladesh


MNA Business Desk: Korean entrepreneurs have shown their keen interest to invest in Bangladesh, saying they will send a trade delegation to Bangladesh soon, reported enw sagency. They expressed their interest at the Bangladesh Investment Seminar jointly organised by Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA) and Bangladesh embassy in South Korea in Seoul, South Korea on Friday. BIDA executive chairman Kazi M Aminul Islam and Bangladesh ambassador to South Korea Abida Islam highlighted the remarkable socio-economic achievements of Bangladesh, including the investment opportunities and the incentives offered by the government of Bangladesh. They pointed out that there are ample untapped areas ...

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Budget session in parliament to begin June 5

mega budget

MNA Business Desk: The Jatiya Sangsad budget session for 2018-19 fiscal year will begin on June 5. It will be the last budget of the incumbent Awami League government. The parliament will go into session at 11:00am on that day with Speaker Shirin Sharmin Chowdhury in chair. A few hours before the session starts, Working Advisory Committee meeting will fix the schedule of country’s 47th and fifth budget of the current government. however, Finance Minister Abul Maal Abdul Muhith with place the budget proposal for 18-19 fiscal year on June 7. It will be Abdul Muhith’s 12th budget as finance ...

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Euro zone GDP growth slows in Q1

boost ties

MNA Business Desk: The economical growth of the Euro zone slowed in the first quarter of this year and industrial output in March was weaker than expected, data from the European Union’s statistics office Eurostat has showed. The Eurostat said on Tuesday that its earlier preliminary flash estimate that gross domestic product (GDP in the 19 countries that share the euro rose 0.4 per cent quarter on quarter in the Q1 slowing from 0.7 per cent in the previous quarters. Year-on-year, euro zone GDP grew 2.5 per cent, in line with the preliminary estimate and down from 2.8 per cent ...

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Govt considering corporate tax cut: Muhith


MNA Business Desk: Finance Minister Abul Maal Abdul Muhith on Saturday said the government is considering slashing corporate tax rate as it is encouraging that the country’s young generation is now showing interests in paying income tax. The minister hinted that the government is planning for introducing double slab of VAT system from the fiscal year 2019-20 instead of 15 percent flat VAT rate. Muhith said this while addressing a ‘Pre Budget Discussion’ as chief guest organized jointly by Dhaka Chamber of Commerce & Industry (DCCI), The Daily Samakal and Chanel 24 at the Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC). The ...

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Banking sector plagued by scam: UN

Public Service Day

MNA Business Desk: The banking sector in Bangladesh has been plagued by financial scams, non-performing loans and weak monitoring problems, which might cause a macroeconomic risk in the near term, says a UN report. The report says, robust growth has been supported by domestic demand, especially large infrastructure projects and new initiatives in the energy sector, reported news agency. Remittance flows have also started to increase with the increase in global oil prices, according to the Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific 2018. Mobilising financing for development remains a fundamental priority in the Asia-Pacific region, said the ...

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FDI from USA drops by 23.5pc in 2017


MNA Business Desk: Net inflow of Foreign Direct Investment or FDI from the United States of America (USA) to Bangladesh dropped by 23.50 per cent in 2017. Latest statistics, released by Bangladesh Bank, showed that net inflow of FDI from the US declined to $166.66 million in the past year, which was $217.74 million in 2016. Disinvestment, repayments of loans and losses of the current multination entities have been deducted from the gross inflow of FDI to calculate the net FDI. Gross inflow of FDI from the US also declined by around 26 per cent to $181.49 million in the ...

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Showcase Canada begins May 6

Showcase Canada

MNA Business Desk: A two-day long Showcase Canada 2018 (Trade and Education Fair) begins May 6 at International Convention City Bashundhara, Dhaka. The event is supported by the High Commission of Canada to Bangladesh. “Canada is one of the largest and growing trade partners of Bangladesh having two-way trade of C$2.50 billion of which more than C$1 billion is RMG export. Our next target is to take the total trade to C$3 billion by 2021,” a statement of CanCham said. Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed, MP, will grace the occasion as the Chief Guest and inaugurate the Fair, the 4th of ...

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Dhaka to resume FTA talks with Beijing


MNA Business Desk: Bangladesh is going to resume negotiations on a free trade agreement (FTA) with China to boost trade with the world’s second-largest economy, officials said. As part of the process, a high-powered delegation of the government would visit Beijing in June and discuss with their Chinese counterparts on a joint-feasibility study to assess the economic potentials of such bilateral agreement, officials said. Though the visit was supposed to happen early this year, it did not take place for unknown reasons. In March, Bangladesh became eligible to graduate from an LDC (least-developed country), for which it could lose a ...

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China to give $2.6b loan for Padma rail link

Padma rail link

MNA Business Desk: The loan agreement of Padma rail link project was signed on Friday in Beijing, capital of China, said an official release in Dhaka. The $2.67 billion agreement was signed at Exim Bank of China’s head office at 10.30am (local time of China), reported news agency. Additional secretary of the Economic Relations Division (ERD) M Zahidul Haq and China Exim Bank vice president Sun Ping signed the agreement on behalf of their respective sides. A six-member Bangladesh delegation is now visiting China. Officials from the contractor organizations and Economic Counselor of Bangladesh embassy in China M Jahangir, among ...

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RJSC seeks info on default loans from BB

default loans

MNA Bushiness Desk: The Office of the Registrar of Joint Stock Companies and Firms (RJSC) has sought information on default loans urgently from the central bank for checking loan portfolio of aspirant directors of registered companies, reported news agency. The issue was discussed at a meeting held Wednesday among the Bangladesh Bank (BB), the Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC), the RJSC, the Insurance Development and Regulatory Authority (IDRA), the Micro-credit Regulatory Authority (MRA), the Department of Cooperatives (DoC) and the Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC). At the meeting, the RJSC sought information on default loan from Credit Information Bureau ...

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BD gets 1st delivery of imported LNG


MNA Business Desk: The maiden consignment of LNG reached Maheshkhali from Qatar to supply the imported gas to the national network. According to official sources, the very first consignment of liquefied natural gas (LNG) reached Chittagong through the Excelerate Energy’s floating storage and re-gasification unit (FSRU). The FSRU is generally known as LNG terminal which was set up on a floating vessel with storage and re-gasification facilities, will permanently station in Maheshkhali. ‘The FSRU reached the country at 2 pm Tuesday, one day ahead of its scheduled arrival’, Mohammad Quamruzzaman, managing director of Rupantarita Prakritik Gas Company Limited (RPGCL), reported ...

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IMF unveils new corruption policy


MNA Business Desk: The International Monetary Fund (IMF) will systematically address corruption and its impact on economic growth with all its member countries under new guidelines launched on Sunday. The new policy also tackles how rich countries contribute to corruption in the developing world by failing to prevent bribery and money laundering or by allowing anonymous corporate ownership. “We know that corruption hurts the poor, hinders economic opportunity and social mobility, undermines trust in institutions and causes social cohesion to unravel,” IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde said in a statement. Poor governance sap economic growth and exacerbate inequality, according to ...

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WB shareholders back $13b capital increase


MNA Business Desk: The World Bank’s shareholders on Saturday endorsed a $13 billion paid-in capital increase that will boost China’s shareholding but bring lending reforms that will raise borrowing costs for higher-middle-income countries, including China. The multilateral lender said the plan would allow it to lift the group’s overall lending to nearly $80 billion in fiscal 2019 from about $59 billion last year and to an average of about $100 billion annually through 2030. “We have more than doubled the capacity of the World Bank Group,” the institution’s president, Jim Yong Kim, told reporters during the International Monetary Fund and ...

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Novoair launches mobile app


MNA Business Desk: Novoair, one of the private airlines in the country, has introduced a mobile app aiming to make ticket purchase process easier and convenient for its passengers. Travellers can now book or purchase tickets, get information regarding flight status, services of Frequent Flyer Programme-Smiles through the mobile app, says a press release Wednesday. One can find all the information and addresses of all Novoair sales offices by contacting with its reservation and ticketing department directly, the release said. The mobile app is now available for download at App Store and Play Store. To know more details about the ...

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BB asks to bring down interest to single digit

capital flight

MNA Business Desk: The Bangladesh Bank has asked the banks to take effective measures to bring down the interest rate on lending to single digit from the existing level, reported news agency. The advice was made at two separate meetings of senior bankers held at the central bank headquarters in Dhaka on Monday with Bangladesh Bank (BB) governor Fazle Kabir in the chair. The meeting also discussed interest rates, charged by the six state-owned commercial banks (SoCBs), on term deposits to other banks, the sources added. On the other hand, the BB’s high-ups advised the senior representatives of Association of ...

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China’s largest trade fair opens

largest trade fair

MNA Business Desk: China’s largest trade fair opened its 123rd session Sunday in south China’s Guangdong Province, attracting more than 25,000 companies as exhibitors. The biannual China Import and Export Fair, also known as the Canton Fair, is considered as a barometer of China’s foreign trade. Xu Bing, the fair’s spokesperson, said buyers from more than 210 countries and regions are expected to attend the fair, with the total number of buyers to level with the previous session. The first phase of the fair, which runs from April 15 to April 19, features products including home appliances, electronics and hardware, ...

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US to rejoin TPP if terms improved: Trump


MNA Business Desk: US president Donald Trump said the United States would only join the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), a multinational trade deal his administration walked away from last year, if it offered “substantially better” terms than those provided under previous negotiations. His comments, made on Twitter late Thursday, came only hours after he had unexpectedly indicated the United States might rejoin the landmark pact, and amid heightened volatility in financial markets as Washington locked horns with China in a bitter trade dispute. Trump had told Republican senators earlier in the day that he had asked United States Trade Representative ...

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NBR to organize Halkhata Day on Apr 14

Halkhata Day

MNA Business Desk: National Board of Revenue (NBR) will organise Halkhata Day marking Pahela Baishakh, the first day of Bengali New Year, reported news agency. “As April 14 is a public holiday, the NBR will begin its Bengali New Year celebration programme the next day (April 15),” NBR Chairman Mosharraf Hossain Bhuiyan told journalists at his office Tuesday. NBR is going to organize ‘Halkhata Day’ for the second time as it first observed day last year on the occasion of ‘Choitra Sangkranti’, a day before the first day of Bengali New Year. Like last year, the NBR will consider offering ...

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Chinese investment in US falls sharply

Chinese investment

MNA Business Desk: Chinese investment in the US plunged last year as tensions between the two countries mounted. The value of deals announced in 2017 fell by more than 90 per cent from the year before, according to joint studies by the National Committee on US-China Relations and the Rhodium Group. The reports said policy shifts in both countries triggered the decline. China has curbed outbound investments, while the US is raising concerns about deals for national security reasons. “This altered policy environment has already changed patterns of two-way (foreign direct investment) and will continue to reshape investment levels and ...

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Dhaka, Delhi sign 6 MoUs to strengthen ties


MNA National Desk: Bangladesh and India on Monday signed six documents to strengthen development cooperation between the two countries, reported news agency. Indian Foreign Secretary Vijay Keshav Gokhale and his Bangladesh counterpart M Shahidul Haque witnessed the signing of the documents at state guesthouse Padma after a bilateral meeting between them. ‘Today, we add another 6 documents to our large and growing list of meaningful agreements signed during the recent visits of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Bangladesh and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to India,’ said Vijay Gokhale. These include the implementation MoU on the friendship pipeline between Numaligarh and ...

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BB directs to keep Agrabad branches open

default loans

MNA Business Desk: Bangladesh Bank (BB) directs all scheduled commercial banks to keep open their branches in Chittagong port area for round the clock and seven days a week for facilitating international trade, reported news agency. The central bank in this regard issued a circular on Sunday and sent letters to chief executive officers (CEO) of all the commercial banks’. Earlier, the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) directed the BB to issue circular regarding opening all banks’ branches round the clock for seven days a week. The central bank circular said, “As per PMO’s directive all scheduled banks must take necessary ...

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Central Banks of India, Pakistan crack down on crypto currencies

crypto currencies

MNA Business Desk: India’s central bank barred banks on Friday from having any links to virtual currency dealers, slashing the prices of bitcoin and other crypto currencies on local exchanges. Pakistan’s central bank said in a separate statement late on Friday that crypto-currencies were not legal in the country. The State Bank of Pakistan told banks and other financial services providers to refuse customers seeking crypto-currency transactions. It noted that those using crypto-currencies to transfer funds outside Pakistan could be prosecuted. India’s government and the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) have previously cautioned the public over crypto currencies, with New ...

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U.S. anticipates talks with China on rise of trade fight


MNA Business Desk: The U.S. expressed willingness on Wednesday to negotiate a resolution to an escalating trade fight with China after Beijing retaliated against proposed U.S. tariffs on $50 billion in Chinese goods by targeting key American imports, but the Chinese ambassador to Washington said it will require willingness of both. Just 11 hours after President Donald Trump’s administration proposed 25 percent tariffs on some 1,300 Chinese industrial, technology, transport and medical products, China shot back with a list of similar duties on major American imports including soybeans, planes, cars, beef and chemicals. Beijing’s rapid and vigorous reaction raised the ...

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TCB to sell 5 daily essentials before Ramadan

daily essentials

MNA Business Desk: The Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) will sell five daily essentials at least 7 to 10 days before the starting of Ramadan this year. The five goods are – soybean oil, sugar, red lentil, grams, and dates. TCB official Md Humayun Kabir said they have concluded all the preparations for selling the products. The prices of the products will be fixed after consulting with Commerce Ministry and the goods will be placed for sell in district and divisional level of the country, he said. The essentials will be available at TCB sale-centers, dealers and open market truck ...

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