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Govt May Allow Undeclared Money In 5 Sectors PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 14 May 2009

The government may allow investment of undeclared income in five sectors including pharmaceutical, cement, toys, shoes and garments in the next budget, the finance minister says.

"The products are in great demand. So we are thinking about utilising undeclared money in these sectors," Abul Mal Abdul Muhith said on Wednesday said at 30th meeting of advisory committee of National Board of Revenue at Sheraton Hotel.

The minister said the next budget would stress on the farm sector to rev up rural economy, and on small and medium industries to generate jobs.

"Rural economy is at the centre of all our activities. So we will have to prioritise agriculture sector to boost rural economy."

"Unemployment is rising every year. The next budget will emphasise small and medium industries to generate employment for the unemployed," he said

Muhith said the economy may not grow at six percent because of the global financial crunch, as predicted, but he expected the GDP to hit eight percent during FY 2010-2011.

He said the budget needed to be tailored keeping the next few years in perspectives.

He talked about steps to enhance revenue earnings that were not enough to fund the massive development.

"Our revenue earning is lower compared to other developing countries and at the same time our public spending is also lower, "he said

"Our public spending is lower than that of Nepal. Public spending will have to be increased to boost creativity through public service."

Muhith said they would increase import duty on luxury products to net more revenue.

On a government plan on fuel before the budget, he said, "We will have to move for dual fuel usage instead of depending on the gas alone."

Gas may have to be supplied for power production stopping fertiliser production which also needs the raw material.

Representatives and entrepreneurs made different proposals to be considered for the next budget at the pre-budget meeting co-organised jointly by NBR and the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

FBCCI president Annisul Huq said duty structure conducive to local industries, extension of market, creation of employment and enhancement of production can provide a cushion against
the massive impact of global economic meltdown.

The chief of the apex business organisation proposed stimulus package plan titled 'Bangladesh Infrastructure Fund' for developing the power situation.

Under the package, five-year investment bonds at 5 percent interest rate can be floated to legalise undisclosed income by keeping source of income secret.

He also proposed 'Bangladesh Power Fund' with idle money in different insurance companies to get over power crisis.

The FBCCI suggested 'Crisis Mitigating Fund for the sectors badly hit by the recession and installation of small power plants on a short-term basis in six to nine months.

Salman F Rahman, vice-president of Beximco Group, Bangladesh's largest business conglomerate, and and a former president of the trade body said, "Our capital market has matured much over time. We will have to diversify into industrialisation with capital market as the source."

Former FBCCI president Mir Nasir Hossain urged the government to withdraw licence fee for installation of captive power plant in the industries.

"The discrimination between local and overseas investment should go," he said.

The president of Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry Zafar Osman suggested national identity cards be used as TIN.

Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association chief M Fazlul Hoque argued for budgetary allocation for installation of waste treatment plant in the industries.


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