POST TIME: 13 May, 2021 09:55:27 AM
BGMEA for 3 years timeframe for repaying loans
BSS, Dhaka

BGMEA for 3 years timeframe for repaying loans

 Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) today demanded that the government would extend further timeframe for repaying loans to 3 years in 30 installments instead of the existing 18 installments to be repaid in 2 years to help owners of garment to pay the salaries and allowances of workers.

BGMEA president Faruque Hassan said this while addressing a virtual press conference today as he placed a set of recommendations on behalf of the BGMEA before the government ahead of the Holy Eid Ul Fitr and the national budget for FY22.

He also demanded for reducing the tax at source at 0.25 percent from the existing 0.50 percent for the export-oriented RMG Industries and thus keeping this rate for five years, keeping intact for five years the corporate tax rate of 12 percent for the RMG Industries and 10 percent corporate tax rate for green Industries.

Besides, the BGMEA president also urged the government for keeping special allocation in the budget for keeping the bank liabilities of the affected industries out of the purview of the single borrower exposure limit, Allowing rescheduling of loans by those factories to restore their operations and thus provide those factories loans at 5 percent interest rate for the extended period.

The other demands of the BGMEA include fixing the income tax on cash incentives at zero percent from the existing 10 percent, forming special fund for the micro and medium enterprises to recoup their losses from the COVID-19 pandemic and thus restore their productions, bringing under the stimulus package the micro and medium export oriented enterprises which could export up to $10 million, providing 10 percent special incentives on export of non-cotton RMG to keep up the competitive edge, increasing the stimulus to 5 percent from the existing 4 percent on export of new and non traditional markets to offset the shock from the COVID-19 pandemic.

While placing these demands, the BGMEA president called upon the government and all the stakeholders to extend their cooperation, motivation and support for the continued flourish, sustainable development, modernization, skills development of this sector and thus expand its global market share from the existing 6.8 percent.

Highlighting the status of disbursing salaries and allowances by the member factories ahead of the biggest festival of the Muslim community, Faruque extended his thanks to the government for taking necessary measures so that the RMG factory owners could get support from the banks to ensure welfare of the RMG workers and thus maintaining law and order situation in the factories.

He informed that till yesterday, salaries for the month of April were disbursed in some 1,866 factories (97.54%) including 1652 factories in Dhaka and 214 factories in Chattogram.

Besides, the BGMEA president said till yesterday, Eid bonuses were disbursed in some 1,882 factories (99%) including 1,659 factories in Dhaka and 223 factories in Chattogram.

Noting that it could not have been possible to keep alive this sector unless Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina did not come up with the stimulus package to face the impact of the pandemic, he said that policy support as well as continued support from the government is very much necessary to keep the competitive edge of this sector, retaining the employments and thus keeping the contributions of this sector in the economy.

The BGMEA president made a fervent call to the countrywide RMG workers not to get confused regarding the Eid vacation and also to avoid any indiscipline side by side to observe this Eid in their nearby workstations instead of going to their village homes. “Your such sacrifices will only protect our lives and livelihood,”

Referring to the government enforced countrywide lockdown till May 16 to rein in the COVID-19 infection rate, he said that the member factories have been asked to follow the pandemic related government directives.

Faruque said due to the pandemic, the export of woven garment fell by 16.64 percent during the July-April period of the current fiscal year (FY21). “But, due to the pragmatic leadership and farsighted directives, we’ve been able to avert a catastrophe and thus could keep operational our factories maintaining the health safety guidelines despite adversities and risks. As a result, it has been possible to avert a large-scale disaster in the economy,”

He mentioned that under the current circumstances, the country’s RMG factories are now taking orders below the break even price only to keep operational the factories and keep up the markets.

BGMEA senior Vice President SM Mannan Kochi, Vice Presidents M Shahidullah Azim, Khandaker Rafiqul Islam, M Nasir Uddin, Miran Ali, directors M Mohiuddin Rubel, M Khosru Chowdhury, Razib Chowdhury were present, among others, at the press conference. Besides, BGMEA first Vice President Syed Nazrul Islam and Vice President Rakibul Alam Chowdhury were virtually connected in the briefing.