Reserves fall below $20b


Bangladesh’s foreign exchange reserves fell below 20 billion U.S. dollars by the end of January, the latest central bank data showed.

Bangladesh Bank (BB) data showed the country’s foreign exchange reserves stood at 19.94 billion dollars on Jan. 31, according to the International Monetary Fund calculation method, compared with 17.20 billion dollars on Dec. 31.

BB said the gross reserve was 25.09 billion dollars by the end of January.

The reserve calculated under the IMF’s balance of payments and investment position manual method is immediately usable, while the gross reserve is also usable subject to the realization of investment.


For a growing economy like Bangladesh, forex reserves equivalent to six months’ import bills are considered adequate.

With the existing reserves, however, central bank officials said Bangladesh is in a position to pay about four months’ import bills.

Bangladesh’s gross foreign exchange reserves hit an all-time high of 48 billion dollars in August 2021.

In a bid to boost shrinking forex reserves, the central bank has taken various measures, including relaxed rules, to woo more remittances from millions of Bangladeshi people living and working abroad in recent years.