DSE turnover exceeds Tk 10b-mark

Country's both the bourses, Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) and Chittagong Stock Exchange (CSE) today also witnessed an upward trend like earlier as investors continued their buying spree on large-cap issues amid optimism. Turnover, a crucial indicator of the market, increased to Taka 10.96 billion on the country's premier bourse which was Taka 8.18 billion at the previous session of the week. DSEX, the prime index of the DSE, went up by 34.95 points or 0.61 per cent to settle at 5,727.02. The DSE 30 Index, comprising blue chips, and the DSE Shariah Index (DSES) also gained 13.36 points to finish at 2,046.81 and 10.52 points closing at 1,261.50. Out of 396 issues traded, 252 closed green, 86 in the red and 58 remained unchanged on the DSE trading floor. ORIONINFU topped the turnover chart, followed by ASIATICLAB, LOVELLO, FEKDIL and Fortune. ESQUIRENIT was the day's best performer, posting a gain of 10 per cent while SHYAMPSUG was the worst loser, losing 2.99 percent. The Chittagong Stock Exchange (CSE) als o ended higher with the CSE All Share Price Index - CASPI -advancing 129.79 points to settle at 16,361.91 and the Selective Categories Index - CSCX gaining 76.90 points to close at 9,850.32. Of the issues traded, 156 advanced, 58 declined and 13 remained unchanged on the CSE. The port city's bourse traded 47.63 lakh shares and mutual fund units with a turnover value of Taka 12.86 crore. Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

Munna to go on Makkah-Madinah tour thru’ Nagad Islamic transactions

Narayanganj resident Mohammad Munna has become the first winner of a trip to Makkah and Madinah by conducting a financial transaction through Nagad Islamic. He made an "Add Money" transaction to his Nagad Islamic account from his bank account and was rewarded with this trip. Recently, Islamic Scholar Muhammad Badruzzaman, founder and CEO of Holy Tune, presented him with the trip documents in front of Munna's house in Narayanganj's Jalkuri neighborhood, said a press release. From the get-go, Nagad Islamic has launched various attractive campaigns for Islamic enthusiasts. In continuation of this, it came up with a campaign during the holy month of Ramadan, offering a pilgrimage to Makkah and Madinah. By using the Nagad Islamic app or dialing *167#, customers could qualify for this holy trip by making any transaction - be it mobile recharge or payments or add-money from banks or cards - with no minimum limit. The lone eligibility requirement was to be a Nagad Islamic user and have an active account. Under this campaign, several Nagad Islamic users will get an opportunity to go on Makkah and Madinah tour, with Mohammad Munna being the first recipient. Mohammad Munna, a resident of Jalkuri village in Siddhirganj upazila of Narayanganj, has been involved in carpentry work since childhood. None of their family members engage in interest-based transactions, so they exclusively use Shariah-compliant mobile financial service Nagad Islamic. Munna said, "My childhood dream was to make a visit to Makkah and Madinah. Allah has given me this opportunity through Nagad. I am very grateful to Nagad for this. If Allah grants, I will send my parents for Umrah after this," he added. Nagad, as the country's first and only mobile financial service provider, has introduced Nagad Islamic separately. The company's Islamic accounts are operated under the supervision of a Shariah Supervisory Committee. Through the Nagad Islamic accounts, customers can easily manage their own savings in a completely interest-free and Shariah-compli ant manner, upholding their religious values and principles. The funds in this account are always kept in banks involved in Islamic banking, ensuring that customers do not engage in any interest-bearing transactions forbidden in Islam. Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

Meeting held between USITC, BGMEA regarding Bangladesh garment industry

A delegation from the United States International Trade Commission (USITC) met with S. M. Mannan (Kochi), President of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) yesterday. The USITC delegation included Erika Bethmann, International Economist, and Mary Roop, International Trade Analyst, alongside Joseph Giblin, Economic Unit Chief from the U.S. Embassy in Dhaka. The purpose of the USITC visit is a fact-finding mission to gather statistical and qualitative information underlying the competitiveness of the apparel industries in Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia and Pakistan, all of which are current leading suppliers to the U.S. market. BGMEA vice presidents Miran Ali and Abdullah Hil Rakib, along with directors Shovon Islam, Ashikur Rahman (Tuhin), Shams Mahmud, and M. Ahsanul Haque and Chair of BGMEA Standing Committee on Labor and ILO Affairs ANM Saifuddin also participated in the discussions with the USITC delegation, said a press release today. During the meeting, the BGMEA leaders underscored the industry's commitments and advancements, particularly in environmental sustainability and workers' rights and welfare. They highlighted Bangladesh's remarkable achievements, such as boasting the highest number of LEED certified green garment factories globally and maintaining its position as one of the safest apparel exporting countries. Previously, at the USITC hearing in March, representatives from the commerce ministry and BGMEA provided insights into the industry's competitiveness, both orally and in written form. In yesterday's meeting, Bangladesh's standing and competitiveness in the global apparel market were reiterated. Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

Netherlands delegation meets BGMEA president to discuss collaborative opportunities

A high-level delegation from the Netherlands government paid a visit to the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) in the capital yesterday and met with its president S. M. Mannan (Kochi). The key objective of the meeting was to explore collaborative opportunities for propelling sustainable development of Bangladesh's RMG industry, said a press release today. The delegation comprised of Sara van Hoeve, first secretary of Economic Affairs, Embassy of the Kingdom of Netherlands to Bangladesh, Lischelle Fisser, desk officer for Bangladesh in Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, Nadia van de Weem, private sector development officer, Netherlands Enterprise Agency, Tanzila Tajreen, senior policy advisor, Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to Bangladesh. The meeting, coordinated by BGMEA vice president Abdullah Hil Rakib and actively participated by vice president Miran Ali, directors Shovon Islam, Md. Ashikur Rahman (Tuhin) and Shams Mahmud, delved into different is sues pertinent to the ready-made garment industry of Bangladesh. The meeting primarily focused on identifying potential collaboration areas, particularly environmental sustainability initiatives such as circular fashion, recycling, and energy efficiency within the RMG sector. Discussions also revolved around facilitating knowledge exchange, technology transfer, and access to finance, particularly for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), to support the sector in becoming more energy and resource efficient, recycling and other environmental areas. The BGMEA leaders provided an overview of the RMG industry, highlighting its current priorities and efforts towards ensuring a sustainable future. They elaborated on industry initiatives including technology up gradation, innovation, digitization, and product diversification to remain competitive in the face of changing global market dynamics. BGMEA thanked the Netherlands government for its support, particularly through initiatives like the Partnership for Clean er Textile (PaCT) program, which has aided participating factories in reducing their water footprint. The importance of such initiatives was underscored to further enhance sustainability and competitiveness within Bangladesh's RMG industry. Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

UK Indo-Pacific minister’s Dhaka visit to boost bilateral ties

UK-Bangladesh cooperation is set to increase on priority areas including migration, economic reform and security, as UK Minister for the Indo-Pacific, Anne-Marie Trevelyan, will arrive in Bangladesh on a two-day visit, tomorrow morning. On her second visit to Bangladesh in her role as Indo-Pacific Minister, she will reaffirm the UK's commitment to strengthening bilateral cooperation between the two countries, said a press release today. During her visit to Dhaka, Minister Trevelyan will meet Bangladesh's Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Foreign Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud. Discussions are expected to focus on UK-Bangladesh migration cooperation, trade and economic ties, and the UK's support to the Rohingya refugee response. The minister will also meet business leaders, humanitarian actors, climate experts and, in meetings with civil society organisations and political leaders, she will recognise the importance of democracy and human rights as foundations for long-term growth and prosperity. Minister Trevel yan will also announce new UK support to equip and empower youth and vulnerable groups in Bangladesh to engage in climate action. Minister for the Indo-Pacific, Anne-Marie Trevelyan, said, "I'm pleased to be back in Bangladesh with our new trade policy project marking an important step forward towards closer UK-Bangladesh collaboration, boosting our economic ties." "We remain steadfast in our support for the Rohingya in Myanmar and Bangladesh, and will provide o12 million of new humanitarian assistance, to increase access to clean water, healthcare, shelter, and protection services for Rohingya refugees and host communities in Bangladesh," she added. British High Commissioner to Bangladesh, Sarah Cooke, said, "Delighted to welcome UK Minister for the Indo-Pacific, Anne-Marie Trevelyan, to Bangladesh. The UK's long-standing friendship with Bangladesh is cemented by the deep cultural and people-to-people links between our two countries." "The UK-Bangladesh partnership continues to go from strength to streng th. From our joint work to tackle economic challenges, to our steadfast support for the Rohingya, and our partnership on climate change, we are determined to do more together," he added. Reaffirming the UK's sustained support for the Rohingya people, Minister Trevelyan will announce o12 million (over 163 Crore Taka) of new UK humanitarian assistance to support Rohingya refugees and neighbouring host communities in Bangladesh. The new funding will provide clean water, healthcare, shelter and protection services. It will also support the development of the camp's infrastructure to help protect it from natural disasters. Minister Trevelyan will also announce a new trade policy project with the Government of Bangladesh. The UK will provide technical assistance to Bangladesh to strengthen trade policy capability and implement reforms. The project will support Bangladesh tackle economic challenges and graduate successfully from Least Developed Country status in 2026. Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

Number of labour force increases to 73.75m

The total number of labour force in the country has increased to 73.75 million in the first quarter (January-March) of 2024 compared to 73.69 million registered in the 1st quarter of 2023. According to the quarterly Labour Force Survey released by the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS), the total number of male labour force in the country in this 1st quarter was 48.45 million while the number of female labour force was 25.30 million. The BBS data showed that the total number of employed population in the country also increased to 71.16 million in this 1st quarter compared to 71.10 million in the 1st quarter of 2023. In this 1st quarter, the total number of male employed population increased to 46.71 million while the total number of female employed population slightly declined to 24.45 million. According to the guideline of the ILO, anyone receiving salaries, wages, profit or engaged in productive work for the own consumption of the household for at least one hour of work over the last seven days woul d be considered as employed. The BBS data also showed that the total number of unemployed people in the country remain unchanged in the 1st quarter of 2024 with 2.59 million (unemployment rate 3.51%) equaling with 2.59 million (unemployment rate 3.51%) registered in the 1st quarter of 2023. The total number of unemployed male population in this 1st quarter was 1.74 million (3.59%) while the total number of unemployed female population was 0.85 million (3.36%). In this 1st quarter, some 48.26 million people including 11.68 million male and 36.58 million female remained out of the labour force. On the other hand, the labour force participation rate in the 1st quarter of 2024 was 60.45 percent including 80.58 percent male participation and 40.89 percent female participation. During this three-month period of 2024, the total number of youth labour force (15-29 years) was estimated at 25.92 million including 13.05 million male and 12.87 million female. Considering the employed population by sector, some 31.8 3 million people remained engaged in the agriculture sector followed by 12.75 million people engaged in the industry sector while 26.58 million people in the services sector. The quarterly Labour Force Survey also revealed that the number of population in the country was 172.94 million including 60.13 million male and 61.88 million female. The number of capable people aged 15 years and above totaled 122.01 million. Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

Five thousand hectares of forest under fire in Banke

An area of 5,133 hectares of various community forests and Chakla forest in Banke is currently under fire. According to the District Forest Office, Banke, a total of 76 community forests and one Chakla Forest have been affected by fire. There are around 100 community forests in Banke. Birendra Rokka, Assistant Forest Officer and Information Officer of the District Forest Office, said that the fire has been brought under control in most of the forests with the help of fire fighting vehicles supported by eight fire fighters. To control the fire, 30 km of fire lines have been constructed in Chakla forest and 20 km in various community forests. The fire is reported to have started due to the long dry season without rainfall and also by the carelessness of people. Due to the fire, rabbits, snakes, different species of birds have died. Meanwhile, 105 incidents of fire have occurred in various local levels of Banke. One person has died and six others were injured in the incidents, said Assistant Chief District Officer Jorasingh Majhi. A total of 104 cattle heads have perished in the fire incidents. Property worth Rs 17.7 million was damaged in the fire incidents, that have occurred in Narainapur, Raptisonari, Janaki and Nepalgunj. Source: National News Agency RSS

Committee formed to assess loss of biodiversity in Sundarbans fire

The Forest Department has formed a committee to assess the loss of biodiversity in the wake of the Sundarbans fire. Mihir Kumar, Conservator of Forests of Khulna Region, has been made as the chairman of the committee and Divisional Forest Officer of Khulna Management Planning Department as member-secretary, said a press release. Other members of the committee are representatives of the Department of Environment; Divisional Forest Officer, Bagerhat, Sundarbans East Forest Division; Dr. S. M Feroz, Professor of Forestry and Wood Technology discipline of Khulna University; Dr. Swapan Kumar Sarker, Mangrove Ecologist of Aranyak Foundation and Professor of Shahjalal University of Science and Technology, Sylhet and representative of Wildlife Conservation Society. The committee has been asked to submit a detailed report within the next 10 working days assessing the damage to forest resources and biodiversity and making recommendations about the next steps to be taken. Although the fire is completely under contr ol, the forest department is now constantly monitoring it through drones. Smoke from the fire was detected thrice today by drone monitoring and quickly extinguished. The area of ??the fire was 7.9 acres, out of which 5 acres were damaged. In the case of forest fires, the fire also remains deep in the soil in the roots of the trees, which can then re-ignite or smoke after a few hours. Therefore, to avoid any kind of accident, from today till the next three days, the patrol team of the forest department will be responsible for fire monitoring and extinguishing any new fire at any place. Currently, along with the forest department, fire service and police force members are on duty at the spot. The fire service team will also be present at the spot tomorrow. Coast Guard, Navy and Air Force personnel left the scene as the fire was brought under control. Environment, Forest and Climate Change Minister Saber Hossain Chowdhury, Secretary Dr Farhina Ahmed and Chief Conservator of Forests Md. Amir Hossain Chowdhu ry are supervising and coordinating the fire fighting activities of Sundarbans round the clock. Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

President for enhancing supervision to ensure quality education in universities

President Mohammed Shahabuddin today asked the university authorities to increase the supervision activities in universities to ensure of quality education. 'It is very important to ensure quality of education along with the expansion of higher education... The university can play an important role by increasing their supervision in this regard,' the President told the delegation of the National University (NU) as they paid a courtesy call on him today. Later, President's Press Secretary Md Joynal Abedin told the BSS that during the meeting, the head of the stare was apprised by the delegation of various plans and educational activities of the university. NU Vice-Chancellor Prof. Dr. Md. Moshiur Rahman led the delegation. Other delegation members - NU pro-VC Architect Prof. Dr. Nizamuddin Ahmed, Treasurer Professor Abdus Salam Howlader and NU Registrar Mollah Mahfuz Al-Hossein accompanied the VC. The press secretary said the NU VC invited the President, also the Chancellor of the universit ies, to chair the second convocation of the National University, likely to be held in the last month of this year. The Head of State said students can get a higher degree and establish themselves in the national and international arenas as worthy citizens and emphasized extracurricular activities along with formal educational programmes. The university chancellor also directed the authorities to take effective steps for higher training of teachers of the university. He also suggested introducing skill-based programs along with existing educational programs on campuses. Secretaries concerned to the President were present at the meeting. Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

Classes at primary schools to resume on usual time tomorrow

The Ministry of Primary and Mass Education has decided to run classes and academic activities on usual time at primary and pre-primary schools across the country tomorrow. "All the Primary and pre-primary schools run by the government, Child Welfare Trust and learning centres of the Bureau of Non-Formal Education have been requested to take necessary measures to continue classes and academic activities from May 7 on usual time following the academic calendar-2024," said a ministry notification issued today. The classes for first shift will extend until 12:20 pm while the second shift will continue until 4:15 pm, said the notification, adding, "The effectiveness of the order issued by the Ministry of Primary and Mass Education on May 27 has been revoked." Due to intense heat, the class schedule of primary schools was adjusted earlier. Under the revised schedule, primary schools with one shift were operated from 8:00 am to 11:30 am, while schools with two shifts had their first shift from 8:00 a m to 9:00 am and the second shift from 9:45 am to 11:30 am. Besides, school assemblies were temporarily halted until the heat wave subsided to a tolerable level. However, starting from tomorrow, the classes for the first shift will extend until 12:20 pm, and the second shift will continue till 4:15 pm, following the previous schedule. Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

DU to hold in-person classes from Wednesday

The Dhaka University (DU) authorities have decided to hold its classes and examinations in-person from Wednesday (May 8) as ongoing heatwave comes down to a tolerable level across the country. "DU Vice Chancellor Prof Dr ASM Maksud Kamal approved the decision today", said a press release signed by DU public relation director Mahmud Alam. On April 21, the DU authorities decided to hold classes virtually due to the heatwave that scorched Bangladesh over the past several weeks. Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha

Payment and Settlement System Bill-2024 placed in JS

A bill titled 'Payment and Settlement System Bill-2024' aimed at bringing all kinds of payments generated in banks and non-bank financial institutions under the supervision of Bangladesh Bank (BB) was placed today in the Jatiya Sangsad (JS) here. State Minister for Finance Wasika Ayesha Khan on behalf of Finance Minister Abul Hasan Mahmud Ali placed the bill in the House with Speaker Dr Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury in the chair. While placing the bill, the State Minister for Finance said that many kinds of payments and transactions using digital platforms were taking place along with traditional payments. The increasing transactions through the electronic payment system, the electronic fund transfer and mobile banking will come under the purview of the proposed law. It would provide users with a safeguard from electronic frauds, according to the bill. The draft has provisions of imposing penalties for violating the law. A fine of Taka 25 lakh has been proposed as the maximum financial penalty. The BB will e xercise a provision of the proposed law to cancel licences of errant companies. It will also be entitled to appeal to the High Court for liquidation of companies if they are engaged in anti-people activities. In 2015, the BB first formulated the draft under a World Bank programme for strengthening the country's financial system. According to finance division officials, the passage of the law will help releasing loans committed by the WB under the programme. After placing of the proposed bill, the state minister proposed to send the bill to the parliamentary standing committee on the respective ministry for scrutiny and submit it before the House within next 15 days. Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha