Tuesday, May 28

News Brief: Bangladesh High Commission London

The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) yesterday approved eleven development projects at a cost of Tk 37.23 billion in total. Presided over by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council endorsed eight fresh projects with three revised schemes in its meeting in Dhaka.

Parliament yesterday passed the supplementary budget of Tk 183.70 billion for the outgoing fiscal (2016-17) to meet the additional expenditures under different ministries and divisions. Finance Minister AMA Muhith placed the supplementary budget in the House on June 1 along with the national budget.

The government has incorporated a new provision in Customs Act 1969 to award Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) status to honest and genuine exporters and importers to facilitate them with privilege in release of goods from customs stations. The Finance Bill 2017 introduced the provision for the first time in a bid to simplify the customs procedures for both local and international compliant businesses.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina hosted an iftar for judges, diplomats and high civil and military officials at Ganabhaban in Dhaka yesterday. The Prime Minister went round different tables set for the guests, exchanged pleasantries with them and enquired about their well-being.

The historic 6-point Day, marking the demand for autonomy for former East Pakistan, now Bangladesh, will be observed today across the country in a befitting manner. On this day in 1966, the Awami League under the charismatic leadership of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman called for a day-long hartal throughout the then East Pakistan pressing the demand for autonomy to end the exploitation, deprivation, subjugation and tyranny of the central government of Pakistan.

Bangladesh has expressed disappointment at the United States’ decision of withdrawing from the 2015 Paris climate accord. “It would be unfortunate to lose a leading partner like the United States in the global journey to secure a green and safe planet for us and our future generations,” said a statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs yesterday.

The Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh yesterday for the first time started using bomb detection dogs in cargo screening at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport. Meanwhile, Civil Aviation Minister Rashed Khan Menon yesterday said the EU did not impose any ban on air cargo from Bangladesh; they suggested upgrading the existing airport security with explosive detection system.

The country’s export earnings in July-May stood at $31.79 billion, growing by 3.67 per cent from the same period of last FY 2015-16 when the country earned $30.66 billion.

Bangladesh’s burgeoning drug industry, after meeting local demand, is exporting drugs and raw materials to 127 countries, the Health Minister said. Replying to questions tabled at the Parliament by MPs yesterday, Mohammed Nasim said 98 per cent of the Bangladesh’s local demand is being met by Bangladesh’s own pharmaceutical companies.

Bangladesh has advanced significantly in internet connectivity and effectively leads major SAARC nations, with nearly 42.0 per cent of total population using internet for various purposes. The latest data from the Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission shows that the total number of internet users has reached 67.245 million at the end of February 2017. The staggering number is around 41.52 percent of the total population of the country, leaving many Asian powerhouses behind with huge margin.

The government has promoted Ambassador Ismat Jahan to Senior Secretary, the first officer from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to get elevated to the rank.

 Press Wing London, 07 June 2017