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Forex reserves likely to increase due to govt steps: PM Hasina tells Parliament


by tbhad

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Wednesday said an improvement in forex reserves is likely in the coming days as a number of measures such as discouraging unnecessary imports and encouraging remittance income have been taken by the government.

The prime minister said this in Parliament during her question-answer session while responding to a tabled question from ruling Awami League MP from Naogaon Shahiduzzaman Sarker.

She said that the foreign exchange reserve was 32.94 billion dollars in FY2017-18.

She said that due to inflationary pressures and post-Covid demand growth, imports have increased in the 2021-2022 financial year, creating some pressure on Bangladesh’s trade balance.

“As a result, although foreign exchange reserves reached an all-time high of $48.06 billion in August 2022, it subsequently began to decline to cope with this pressure,” she added.

Hasina, also Leader of the House said, the rate of decline in reserves increases when the central bank starts using foreign exchange reserves to maintain the value of the taka against the US dollar in order to control inflation.

“According to the latest statistics dated 31 May, the amount of reserves is 29.87 billion dollars – with the help of which the import expenses of more than four months can be met,” she also said.
In reply to another query of ruling AL MP Noor Uddin Chowdhury from Laxmipur, the prime minister said that the success of her government in implementing the promises of the communication sector is now universally recognised and appreciated.
In her reply, the PM highlighted various projects and future plans in the communication sector.

She said that the Bridges Division has taken various  plans for the development of the communication system of the country.

These include – the construction of 40 kilometre long Dhaka East-West Elevated Expressway, construction of 258km subway in Dhaka city, construction of 86km long Dhaka Inner Elevated Circular Road in Dhaka city and construction of about 2.25km long bridge over Meghna river on Bhulta-Araihajar-Bancharampur-Nabinagar road in Dhaka and Brahmanbaria districts.

The  plans also include – construction of 10.49km long bridge over Tentulia and Kalabadar rivers on Barishal-Bhola road; construction of 1.59km long bridge over Ariyal Kha river on Rahmatpur-Babuganj-Muladi Hijla-Mehendiganj road in Barisal district.

In response to a question from another AL MP Mahfuzur Rahman from Chattogram, PM Hasina said that about 55,000 hectares of unused land have already been brought under cultivation as a result of taking the initiative to cultivate those land.

Highlighting the various steps taken by the government in the agriculture sector, the prime minister said that as a result of the adoption and implementation of the government’s agriculture-friendly policies, the production of rice, maize, potatoes, vegetables and fruits and other crops is continuously increasing.

Bangladesh has risen to the third position in rice production in the world. Besides, 22 agricultural products are among the top 10 countries in the world.

She said that the government is trying to continue agricultural production to deal with the current crisis.

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