** We see no end to overwhelming lawlessness everywhere: Problem is muscle politics ** Remittance dips 15pc amid forex crisis ** Lawyer’s six bank accounts frozen ** CEC assures OECD envoys to hold inclusive, acceptable polls ** Exports hit record $ 52b in outgoing fiscal year ** Visitors suffer from online ticketing at Nat’l Museum ** Govt to lower age bracket for children to punish teen gangs ** Motorcycles on Padma Bridge not allowed before Eid-ul-Azha ** SSC likely to be in August ** Environment is absent for participation of girl students at colleges and universities ** City residents yet to get respite from waterlogging ** Plastic mini packs harming health, environ severely ** US to send Ukraine advanced surface-to-air missile systems ** Padma bridge Record collection of Tk 3.16cr in one day ** Country reports 6 more Covid deaths with 1,105 cases ** Another killed in road crash in Padma bridge area ** A huge quantity of local and foreign currencies, gold and silver jewelries in 16 sacks were found from the charity boxes of Pagla Masjid in Kishoreganj. Several hundreds including people from district admin, banks as well as madrasa students participated in counting the money and assorting the wealth. After every three months, the boxes are opened, but this time they were opened after 110 days and found Tk 3.60 crore. Last time, about Tk 4 crore, foreign currencies as well as gold jewelries were found from the mosque’s charity boxes. NN photo ** Padma Bridge Khulna Railway Station missing passengers’ hustle-bustle ** BB's monetary policy inadequately addresses inflation ** Long tailbacks on toll plaza as all booths were not operational ** Eid advance train ticket sales begin ** Flood is likely to be prolonged ** Foreign envoys in Dhaka remember those killed ** 1,500 militants arrested since Holey Artisan attack: RAB DG ** DGHS reports 5 more Covid deaths, 1,897 new cases **
Mega projects

Economy likely to face crisis during loan repayment

23 May 2022

Staff Reporter     :
The country's economy is likely to face a severe crisis when repayments of foreign loans, taken for ongoing megaprojects, start to pile up, the economists said.
Calling the repayment period "red alert", they estimated that the period would be started from 2026-28 and suggested not taking any megaproject and expanding projects' tenure to avoid the crisis.
In addition to income and wealth inequality, they said health and education inequality is also increasing in the country.
They came up the comments while speaking at a press conference title "Alternative budget proposal 2022-23: A democratic budget proposal" organized by Bangladesh Economic Association (BEA) at its head quarter in the city on Sunday.
"The number of poor people has doubled due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Reducing of this inequality should be the main goal of the next five consecutive national budgets, starting with the upcoming budget proposal," said Dr Abul Barakat, President of the BEA.
He also suggested the government not to take loans from the domestic banks to meet budget deficit in order to facilitate private sectors.
In a written alternative budget proposal, he informed that the total amount of black money generated in the country in last 47 years from 1972-73 to 2018-19 is estimated Tk 88.61 lakh crore and the amount of laundered money is around Tk 7.98 lakh crore.
Placing Tk20,50,036-crore budget proposal for the upcoming 2022-23 financial year, he recommended the recovery of at least 2 per cent (Tk 1.77 lakh crore) of black money and 10 per cent (Tk 79.83 thousand crore) of laundered money to finance the budget deficit.Other than these two, the BEA proposed widening and adding taxes in several local sources to finance the deficit.
 It suggested wealth tax, tax on excess profits, tax on luxury goods, cancelling car tax exemption on MPs and others, tax on foreign nationals, tax on services, air transport and travel tax, income from royalty and assets, sale of government assets, receipts for irrigation, wire and telephone boards, telecom, regulatory Commission, energy regulatory commission, insurance Regulatory Commission, securities and exchange commission, municipal holding tax, DG health, private hospital permission and renewal fees, pharmaceutical license and renewal fees, beauty parlour services tax, hotel capacity tax, foreign consultation fees, among others.
Moreover, annual estimated inflation should be kept between 5 to 7 per cent. Inflation cannot be allowed to reach a level that will put the economy in a vicious cycle of inflation, the BEA president said.
Dr Barkat said that they have placed such a huge budget proposal considering the global economic situation, Covid-19 pandemic, and the impact of the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war.
The proposed budget of the BEA is around 3.40 times higher than the original national budget size of the current fiscal year which is Tk 6,03,681 crore or 17.5 per cent of GDP.
The proposed budget of BEA is pro-people and pro-democracy, Dr Barkat said, adding that the main aim of their budget is to include the 70 to 80 percent of country's people into sustainable middle class over the next 10 years.
Besides, it has aims to address inequality and lowering down the poverty rate at the lowest level which would ensure establishing a civilized social system in light of the spirit of the War of Liberation.
The alternate budget proposal of BEA consists of some 38 recommendations where Tk 18,70,036 crore (91.2 per cent) will come from the government revenue while the rest Tk 1,80,000 crore (8.7 per cent ) will remain as budget deficit.

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