‘Govt to bring down interest rate to single digit’

DHAKA Bangladesh Bank Governor Fazle Kabir today

said that the government is trying to bring down the lending interest rate to

single digit which is expected to be implemented from April next for the

betterment of economy, businessmen and mass people.

The economy of Bangladesh mostly depends on the banking financial system

and the government is trying to bring down the lending interest rate to

single digit for the betterment of economy, businessmen and mass people which

may be implemented from April next, he said.

The central bank Governor said this when the newly elected Board of

Directors of Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI), led by its

President Shams Mahmud, called on him today at his office, said a DCCI press

release.

Kabir said the government has also taken various infrastructure

development projects where private sector's intervention would be much

appreciated.

Regarding the non-performing loans, he said there is a clear definition of

willful and unintentional loan defaulter in the law. But, if any

entrepreneur failed to repay the loan due to delayed connection of power,

energy, gas or delayed loan approval process or some other reasons, which

have valid ground might get special consideration, he added.

Recently the National Board of Revenue (NBR) withdrew stamp duty which

will help flourish bond market system in the country.

He also stressed that Bangladesh should have a strong secondary Bond

Market for long-term financing mechanism. He also sought all-out cooperation

from the business community for effective and proper utilization of Export

Development Fund (EDF).

Banking Reform Adviser of Bangladesh Bank SK Sur Chowdhury said for the

sake of overall banking eco-system and healthy money market as well as to

achieve targeted economic growth, Bangladesh Bank will amend its rules and

regulations if necessary and this effort will also be continued.

Executive Directors of different departments and high official of

Bangladesh Bank were present at that time.

During the meeting, DCCI President Shams Mahmud said though GDP growth of

Bangladesh has achieved a new height crossing 8 percent growth trajectory,

but private investment is stagnant within 22 percent to 23 percent of GDP.

The stagnant private investment is aggravated by the slow-down in the

private sector credit growth which was 9.87 percent in November 2019.

Higher interest rate on bank loan is one of the reasons for slow-down of

private investment. Shams said urging to cut down the lending rate to single

digit.

In order to reduce the non-performing loan (NPL), he suggested

establishing a mechanism in order to identify willful and unintentional

defaulter.

Terming the SMEs as the lifeline of the industry, Shams sought access to

export market, required infrastructure facility and access to finance for the

SMEs.

In order to reduce the dependence on public finance and banking system

finance, the DCCI President suggested that the government should develop

alternative sources of long-term financing for infrastructure and industrial

projects like bond market in the local capital market.

Senior Vice President of DCCI NKA Mobin, Directors Andaleeb Hasan, Arman

Haque, Alhaj Deen Mohammed, Enamul Haque Patwary, Engr. Md. Al Amin, Monowar

Hossain, Nuher L. Khan, Engr. Shamsuzzoha Chowdhury, S M Zillur Rahman and

Waqar Ahmad Choudhury spoke at the meeting.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)