Bangladesh Bank

Banks to remain open on Friday, Saturday at ports

Posted by BankInfo on Mon, Oct 07 2013 03:02 pm

Bangladesh Bank (BB) has directed banks to keep open the authorised delaer (AD) branches located at all land and sea ports on Fridays and Saturdays to facilitate trade and commerce.

The regulatory directive came with the view to facilitate import of onion during and before celebration of the Eid-ul-Azha and Durga Puja, two major festivals.

This directive will remain effective until further notice to banks, a circular issued on Sunday says.

Banks located at Dhaka airport, Chittagong and Mongla sea ports and Sonamosjid, Hilli, Benapole and ICD terminal in Kamalapur are under the directives.

News:Daily Sun/7-Oct-2013

BB, state banks may get separate pay scale this month

Posted by BankInfo on Sun, Oct 06 2013 12:38 pm

The government may declare a separate pay scale for the employees of Bangladesh Bank and state-owned commercial banks this month.

A committee led by Cabinet Secretary Musharraf Hossain Bhuiyan is looking into a finance ministry proposal and the separate pay scale is likely to be finalised in the next meeting of the committee, officials said.

Meanwhile, the dearness allowance and new pay commission for the civil servants may also be announced this month. After the cabinet meeting on Thursday, Finance Minister AMA Muhith held an informal meeting with the prime minister about this.

The Banking Division under the finance ministry has proposed a total of 11 grades for the staff of both the central bank and the state banks.

There are 20 grades in the existing pay scale for the civil servants, including those of the central bank and the state banks, a Banking Division official said.

But in case of a separate pay scale, the number of grades has been brought down to 11, the official added.
Banking Division Secretary M Aslam Alam told The Daily Star that they are trying to finalise the separate pay scale this month. However, as the number of grades is being reduced, some time is needed to ensure that none is affected.

Different aspects were considered by the Banking Division in preparing the draft pay scale. In the process, the Division considered suggestions made by the central bank and the state banks and also studied the pay structures of two private banks and the Indian central bank.

According to the Banking Division recommendations for the 11 grades in total, the basic salary for those in the highest grade will be Tk 52,000 and Tk 5,000 for the lowest grade.

In the existing 20-grade scale, the highest basic is Tk 33,500 and the lowest is Tk 4,100.
On the other hand, the pay structure of Mutual Trust Bank with 20 grades shows the highest was Tk 85,800 and the lowest Tk 6,400.
In case of Uttara Bank with 15 grades in 2011, the basic for the highest grade was Tk 40,000 and the lowest was Tk 4,200.
The highest grade holder in the Indian central bank receives a basic of Rs 37,400 and the lowest grade holder Rs 4,440.
Considering the currency exchange rates, the real salary for Indian central bank employees is higher than their Bangladeshi counterparts.
In addition, civil servants in Bangladesh also receive lower salaries than their counterparts in India. According to a Banking Division report, the Indian cabinet secretary draws a monthly salary of Rs 90,000, whereas the Bangladesh cabinet secretary receives Tk 45,000.

A finance ministry official said they have made the recommendations, taking everything into consideration.
The finance ministry has been debating giving a dearness allowance worth 10 or 20 percent to the civil servants.

The decision will be taken after the finance minister discusses the matter with the prime minister in a couple of days, officials said.

News:The Daily Star/6-Oct-2013

BB to supply 140 fake-note detectors for cattle haats

Posted by BankInfo on Sat, Oct 05 2013 11:43 am

This year, the central bank has taken several steps against the supply of fake notes during the festival

Bangladesh Bank will provide 140 fake-note detecting machines to the law enforcing agencies to prevent the transaction of fake notes in the cattle markets as Eid-ul-Azha is nearing.

This year, the central bank has taken several steps against the supply of fake notes during the festival, said a press release.

The banks have also become involved in the efforts by providing help in the detection of fake notes in the cattle markets in the areas of city councils, municipalities and thanas across the country.

Bangladesh Bank has already asked the banks in the divisional and district levels to raise awareness among the people about the fake notes.

The central bank already sent letters to the scheduled banks directing to provide the fake-note detection services in the cattle markets in the north and south city corporations of Dhaka.

In addition, the central bank has requested the Ministry of Information to present video images of original notes as part of raising public awareness against fake notes.

News:Dhaka Tribune/3-Oct-2013

BB, MoF urged to ensure facilities to women entrepreneurs

Posted by BankInfo on Thu, Sep 26 2013 11:13 am

President of Association of Grassroots Women Entrepreneurs Bangladesh (AGWEB) Mousumi Islam has called upon Bangladesh Bank (BB) and ministry of finance (MoF) to ensure facilities earmarked for women entrepreneurs.

She said the central bank had issued directives to banks to provide single digit interest rate from small and medium enterprise fund to them. But it remains confined to paper. 

The MoF allotted Tk 800 million block allocation for women entrepreneurs but for all practical purposes it is also not available, she said. 

The AGWEB president said this during the inaugural ceremony of Trade Fair 2013 organised by the association at Women Volunteers Association Wednesday. 

To ensure economic empowerment of rural women, efforts are needed to implement these facilities, she said.

Ms Islam also called upon the ministry of commerce to give women entrepreneurs the opportunity to attend international trade fair by providing them free stalls.

Senior Research Fellow of Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies Dr Nazneen Ahmed, Associate Professor of the Department of Development Studies of Dhaka University Dr Shuchita Sharmin, Director,

Programme, Policy and Campaign of Action Aid Mayeeda Choudhury, former UNDP Local Governance Advisor, Gender Expert Durafshan Haque Chowdhury and journalist Munima Sultana addressed the function.

Third Secretary and Vice Consul of the Philippine Embassy Mary Grace V Vallanayor was present, among others.

Some 26 organisations of women entrepreneurs from 15 districts are participating the fair with boutique products, food, jewellery, handicraft items etc.

AGWEB organised three trade fairs in rural areas since its inception three years ago. The Trade Fair 2013 was the first opportunity for grassroots women to showcase their products in the capital.

News:Pinancial Express/26-Sep-2013

BB cuts cost of credit for onion import

Posted by BankInfo on Wed, Sep 25 2013 11:38 am

The central bank yesterday asked all banks not to charge more than 12 percent on credit for onion import in an effort to ensure adequate supply and keep the prices of the cooking item stable.

Banks, in some cases, were charging more than 14 percent for such imports, Bangladesh Bank officials said.
The BB in a notice also advised the banks to keep the loan-margin ratio at the minimum level based on the banker-client relationship.

The central bank directive will remain effective till December 31.

The local market was destabilised of late due to a surge in prices in the international markets, the BB said.
The central bank move came a day after the commerce minister’s request for reducing the credit interest and LC margin for onion imports.

The prices of imported onion in Bangladesh soared 270 percent year-on-year to Tk 90 a kg yesterday after bad weather in India — the country’s main source of the vegetable — created a supply crunch. India hiked its export price to $900 a tonne on Saturday, from $250 a month ago.

The Trading Corporation of Bangladesh on Sunday started selling onion at Tk 55 a kilogram in open markets across the country to cool the prices.

However, consumers cannot buy more than a kg at one time from the state-owned TCB, which is selling the vegetable item through its dealers via trucks.

News:The Daily Star/25-Sep-2013
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