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Wednesday, July 11, 2018 12:51:04 PM
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Big export subsidy scam

BB deduct Tk 408.23 cr from Janata Bank Account

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11th-Jul-2018       
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Kazi Zahidul Hasan :
The Central Bank has deducted Tk 408.23 crore from Janata Bank's reserve account in connection with Crescent Group's export subsidy scam, which caused loss to the national coffer.
M A Kader, a prominent businessman in the country's leather industry, owns Crescent Group.
Three companies of the Group, Crescent Leather Products Limited, Rupali Composite Leatherwear Limited and Remix Footwear Limited, availed government's export subsidies from the bank's Imamganj branch submitting fake documents in between 2017 and 2018.
The Bangladesh Financial Intelligence Unit (BFIU), the anti-money-laundering arm of the Central Bank, exposed the major export fraud recently while conducting an investigation in the bank branch located in the old part of Dhaka city.
"The Central Bank deducted Tk 408.23 crore from Janata Bank's account as per the BFIU's recommendation. The amount was deducted in the last week of June to adjust the government's overdue fund," a senior Bangladesh Bank (BB) official told The New Nation yesterday, asking not to be named.
Referring to the investigation report of BFIU, he said, companies of Crescent Group had not export anything, but availed themselves of the subsidy benefits. The investigation of BFIU revealed that export documents of these companies provided to the bank were fake.
The government earlier announced export incentive schemes package to various potential export sectors to promote export of local manufactured goods in the overseas markets.
Insiders, however, said that the national exchequer is facing huge loss every year as delinquent business firms are frequently drawing export incentives through fraudulent export invoices due to improper oversight bank officials.  "The export subsidies were extended to the Crescent Group's companies in violation of the rules. They have been asked to return the funds to the bank immediately," an official of Janata Bank's Foreign Trade Department told The New Nation yesterday, seeking anonymity.
He said forced loan would be created against them if the bank does not get back the fund.

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