Bangladesh Bank governor Atiur Rahman on Wednesday said that the good corporate organisations are getting loans at 11 per cent interest. ‘I have been told by the business people that they are getting loan at 11 per cent,’ he said while speaking as chief guest at a luncheon organised by American Chamber of Commerce in Bangladesh at Ruposhi Bangla hotel on the day.
‘If you have good records they are giving loans at 11 per cent. The bad corporate houses should not get loans as they don’t return them,’ he said.
Iqbal Ahmed, a businessman present at the meeting, however, said that he was not getting loan at less than 18 to 19 per cent interest.
‘I never miss a single instalment but still the banks are not giving loan at less than 18 to 19 per cent rate,’ he said.
AmCham president Aftab Ul Islam also expressed his concern about the high bank interest.
‘We have high bank rates and bringing investment is still a concern despite having all the positive figures considerable for investment,’ he said.
Aftab also urged the BB governor to consider the bank rate issue more deeply.
Atiur, however, said that there is no reason for the banks to charge high interest.
‘The banks have idle money and if they don’t invest they will incur loss. So I don’t see a point why the banks would charge high interest rate,’ he said.
He also advised Iqbal to contact international agencies like the IFC for loan as the central bank has special programme with such partners.
‘They will give you loan at 5 per cent interest,’ he said.
Aitur said he was not happy with the current inflation figure as the rate should be lower than existing 7.5 per cent.
‘The monetary policy can control only the non-food inflation effectively which we have done successfully. The non-food inflation is not more than 4 to 5 per cent. But when it comes to food inflation we can hardly do much,’ he said.
The BB governor said that the country made 6.12 per cent GDP growth in the current fiscal year.
‘Such progress is commendable despite the odds. And we should trust Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics data on this issue rather than expressing doubts,’ he said.
He said the country might have some political situations once in a while but that should not undermine the economic management we are performing,’ he said.
He, however, agreed that some financial mismanagement took place in the state-run banks.
‘But we are handling the situation firmly. As you may have seen I have already fired a chief executive of a bank. If we found any other we will do the same,’ he said.
American ambassador to Bangladesh Dan W Mozena said that the success story of Bangladesh is not properly told to the world.
‘Bangladeshis need to tell inspiring stories to the world to attract the investors,’ he said.
-With New Age input