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‘Investment-Friendly Budget’

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L-R: Kazi Akram Uddin Ahmed, Rokia Afzal Rahman, Abdul Matlub Ahmad, Atiqul Islam

Businesses yesterday (5 June 2014) praised the proposed budget, saying it will attract more investment and create more jobs.

Kazi Akram Uddin Ahmed, president of the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry, the apex trade body, said there are very few things that go against the interests of businessmen.

“So this budget is both investment- and business-friendly,” he told The Daily Star, adding that only the packaged VAT goes against the businesses.

He said the government’s plan to borrow Tk 31,221 crore from the banking sector will not have any negative impact on the fund flow to the private sector, as there is too much idle money in the banking system.

“Overall, the budget is productive,” said Rokia Afzal Rahman, president of the Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, adding that the pharmaceuticals sector will particularly benefit from the proposed budget.

“The good side of the budget is that the government proposed higher allocation for education, which we wanted.”
Atiqul Islam, president of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association, too termed fiscal 2014-15’s budget to be an investment-friendly one.

He touched upon the offer of 20 percent tax rebate for factory relocation from Dhaka and its surrounding areas, saying it would increase investment and employment.

The reduction of corporate tax too will help encourage further investment in different sectors, the BGMEA president added.

Jahangir Alamin, president of the Bangladesh Textile Mills Association, said the proposed budget will help in diversification of textile products and generate more revenue for the government. The budget will also create more jobs for the unemployed people, he said.

Mohammad Hatem, acting president of the Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association, also commended the budget for its investment friendly nature.

He particularly lauded the proposal of 20 percent rebate on tax for factory relocation from Dhaka, as it will ease traffic congestion in the capital.

A leading businessman yesterday hailed the government to reduce import duties of some industrial raw materials for local industries.

Abdul Matlub Ahmad, founder president of the India-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry, welcomed the government move to reduce import duties for a selection of industrial raw materials, as it will help local entrepreneurs remain competitive in the global market.

Also the chairman of Nitol-Niloy Group, Ahmad urged the government to provide incentives for the light engineering sector.

“We believe Bangladesh will soon become a middle-income country if the government puts emphasis on light engineering.”

He also called upon the government to provide at least 5 percent cash incentive for inward remittance sent by non-resident Bangladeshis to tempt them to send money back through formal channels.

Mahbubul Alam, president of the Chittagong Chamber of Commerce and Industry, welcomed the move to reduce tax on local LC openings for importing goods.

Mousumi Islam, president of the Association of Grassroots Women Entrepreneurs, Bangladesh, however, expressed her disappointment that women entrepreneurs’ interests were once again neglected in the budget.

“We are demanding a separate bank for women entrepreneurs and block allocation of Tk 300 crore.”

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Report: Refayet Ullah Mirdha
Source: Daily Star

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