National, Front Page

Cash stimuli to keep economy afloat

Published : 20 Dec 2020 09:57 PM | Updated : 21 Dec 2020 02:01 AM

The government stands beside the country’s businessmen with cash incentive to keep the economy alive during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has already announced incentive packages of Tk 120,153 crore in 21 sectors to protect all sectors from recession amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Experts said the government has taken time befitting steps to keep up the country’s economy alive amid coronavirus pandemic.

Covid-19 pandemic has already created serious economy’s problem across the world including big economic giant nations, they said.

They further said Bangladesh has quickly recovered its economy from the crisis with the flow of remittance and export earnings. Moreover, the government’s supportive measures, financial aid, relief distribution programmes and other facilities have made country’s economy more vibrant.

 After beginning the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic across the world, the government has held several meetings with prominent economists, researchers, heads of multinational organisations in Dhaka and different ministries to find strategy for speedy implementation of stimulus package, a senior official of finance ministry said.

The new strategy will outline the country's overall economy from the second wave of the coronavirus, he added.

In this situation, the government has taken initiative to reshape the incentive package taken by the government to revive the economy, he added.

At the same time, 90 percent of the incentives have been implemented by this December and new incentives are being added, he said.

The official also said, “Incentive package implementation strategies are being redesigned to expand facilities for export-oriented industries and services, rural economy, damaged cottages, small and medium enterprises.”

The government is going to announce a new package through microfinance institutions (MFIs) for the cottages and micro-entrepreneurs which faced losses during the coronavirus pandemic.

The size of the proposed package could be Tk 5,000 crore to Tk 10,000 crore, he mentioned.

Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi has recently said, “The overall damage, due to the coronavirus in the country, has been reduced due to the government's timely decision and efficient management.”

“Ministries and organisations have strengthened their coordinated efforts to mitigate the impact of Covid-19. The second wave of the Covid-19 has come. We will have to provide more coordinated efforts to tackle the impact,” he said.

Dr Shamsul Alam, member (senior secretary), general economics division, Ministry of Planning, said the coronavirus pandemic would not have much impact on the growth as the government has taken many time befitting measures.

“It is expected that this situation will return to normalcy within the next one year. Afterwards, the economy will begin to accelerate soon,” he added.

Zahid Hussain, former lead economist of World Bank, told Bangladesh Post, “It is easy to get money for big businessmen, but a small and medium enterprise is facing difficulties to get money.”

“For this, the real beneficiaries in the social security sector have to be ensured to keep the wheel of the economy moving. Providing one-time assistance from the budget for small and medium enterprises is needed to keep the economy vibrant,” he said.