Coming down heavily on the finance minister for slashing interest rate on postal savings by half, a lawmaker from the opposition Jatiya Party yesterday demanded that the government restore the previous rate.
Lawmaker Pir Fazlur Rahman made the demand while speaking on a point of order in the parliament.
Fazlur said Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal should have looked into the postal savings of retired service men and those who were dependent on interests from postal savings.
He demanded that the finance minister give a statement in parliament under Section 300 of the rules of procedure of parliament on this issue.
On February 14, the government slashed interest rates on postal savings by half as part of its efforts to reduce interest rates on bank loans and deposits, and promote investment in the private sector.
The Internal Resources Division of the Ministry of Finance on Thursday issued a circular with immediate effect in this regard.
The interest rate on one-year savings was reduced to 5 percent from 10.20 percent.
For two-year schemes, interest rate was cut to 5.50 percent from 10.70 percent, while it was slashed to 6 percent from 11.28 percent for three-year schemes.
The depositors can withdraw profits from their postal savings after six months. In such cases, interest rates would be 4 percent for one-year schemes, 4.50 percent for two-year schemes and 5 percent for three-year schemes, according to the circular.
Previously, the rates were 9 percent, 9.5 percent and 10 percent respectively.
Most banks have already implemented the decision to offer 6 percent interest rate on their Fixed Deposit Receipts (FDRs).
The banks are also expected to provide loans at 9 percent interest rate within a couple of months.