• Friday, December 19, 2014

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Finance Minister AMA Muhith

Money launderers to be revealed: Muhith

The National Board of Revenue is set to prepare a list of individuals who have been laundering money abroad, Finance Minister AMA Muhith said yesterday. He, however, refused to give further details. “It's a sensitive issue -- such activities are done in confidence. As a result, nothing further may be given about this,” Muhith told reporters when asked if the government would take similar steps against money launderers as India did. The new Indian government led by Narendra Modi on Monday published...

India gives fourth instalment of $200m

India yesterday handed over a cheque of $25 million to Finance Minister AMA Muhith as the fourth instalment of the $200 million grant approved in 2012 by the Congress government. This is the first instalment of the grant after Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government assumed power in India this year. Indian High Commissioner Pankaj Saran handed over the cheque at Muhith's official residence in Minto Road. With this tranche, India has completed disbursement of $175 million assistance to Bangladesh. India approved...


Underperforming SoBs

A day after the Finance Minister frankly admitted to the directors' failures in the state owned banks contributing to below par performance of these institutions, the central bank governor has come down hard on the manner in which these banks are being run. This of course is not news. The media has covered the issue extensively ever since the ill-fated loan sanctioning by one such bank in the Hall-Mark debacle. Volumes have been written on the subject; countless seminars...

New pay scale effective from next fiscal yr

The new pay scale for the government employees is likely to be implemented from July 1 next year, Finance Minister AMA Muhith said yesterday. “The government employees, for sure, will get their salaries under the new pay scale from the next fiscal year…. However, if its implementation is delayed, it will be effective retrospectively from July 1,” he told reporters after a meeting with the visiting IMF mission at his secretariat office. The Pay and Service Commission, said the minister, will...

KEPZ 'failed to use land'

Finance Minister AMA Muhith yesterday said the government would take back part of the land it had given to YoungOne Corporation for industrial development. The Korea-based company was allocated about 2,500 acres 17 years ago to set up Korean Export Processing Zone (KEPZ) but it couldn't use even 500 acres, the minister said. “This is wasteful.” These remarks came as Muhith was talking to journalists at his secretariat office and his attention was drawn to The Daily Star reports on government...

Banning Jamaat to invite bigger trouble: Muhith

The Jamaat-e-Islami will go underground if the government bans it, Finance Minister AMA Muhith said yesterday. “The party [Jamaat] can be banned by enacting law. But it will create a big problem. They will go underground and indulge in killings and other misdeeds. They are good at it,” Muhith told journalists at his secretariat office in the capital. “The Jamaat is a bloody party … I hate it,” he said. Asked about rumours that the government had an understanding with the Jamaat...

Barkat hits out at Muhith

Abul Barkat, the immediate past chairman of Janata Bank, yesterday pilloried Finance Minister AMA Muhith, calling him an intellectual fraud, vindictive and power abuser. “He [Muhith] is always humiliating people. He does not know how to show respect -- that's why he is always using dismissive words like 'rubbish',” Barkat said at the unveiling of the book, Janata Bank's Five Years in Corporate Social Responsibility, at the National Press Club in Dhaka. He went on to term the finance minister an...

New VAT law under fire from business leaders

Businessmen yesterday came down hard on the government for ignoring their recommendations and concerns when drafting in the VAT and Supplementary Duty Law 2012. In the face of protest, Finance Minister AMA Muhith announced that a committee with a representative from private sector as co-chairman will be formed to make a report on the law. Based on the report, the government will take steps, he said. “It is surprising that even after so much consultation and discussions the law is not...

Muhith hits back at Barakat

Finance Minister AMA Muhith yesterday hit back at Prof Abul Barakat over the latter's recent remark on the finance ministry's move to suspend the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities of four state-run banks. Barakat, at a programme on his last day at office as the chairman of Janata Bank (JB) on Monday, alleged that the CSR activities were halted as he had not entertained a request of the minister to finance a boat race in Sunamganj. “His [Barakat's] term has expired...

Move to speed up reforms in civil services

The government will set up a commission to expedite reform of the civil services and public institutions as a mid-term review of the sixth five-year plan found little progress on the issues crucial in establishing governance. The Planning Commission outlines a strategy to boost public services every five years. The ongoing programme was set in July 2011, to expire in June next year. "We [the authorities] are setting up a new body to look into the terms and entitlements of various...

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