[Updated: Oct 28, 2020 1:30 pm]
13 April: Prime minister announces: direct cash assistance of BDT 7.6bn (approx. USD91mn) for informal sector workers; health insurance of BDT 5-10 lakh for health workers (doctors, nurses and others) and bankers in case of COVID-19 infected and BDT 25-50 lakh in case of death, total fund allocated BDT7.5bn (approx. USD89mn); special honorarium BDT 1bn (approx. USD12mn) allocated for bankers, health workers and others.
10 May - Workers lay-off prohibition:
Ministry of Labour has prohibited garments and other factories from laying off workers ahead of the Eid-ul-Fitr festivities. Furthermore, such factories are mandated to pay a full month’s salary to workers who have worked full or part of the month in April. Workers who have not been able to work at all during April shall be entitled to receive 65% of the month’s pay.
14 May - Disbursement of cash aid:
Prime Minister launched the disbursement of BDT 12.5bn (approx. USD 142m) cash aid for 5 million poor families. Each family will get BDT 2,500 (USD 30) cash through mobile financial services (MFSs).
Economic stimulus measures
13 April – Refinance scheme BDT 50bn (approx. USD 595m) for agriculture sector:
The scheme will be financed from BB's own source. The affected customers will be able to avail up to 20% extra of the existing loan facilities under the scheme. BB will charge interest 1% from banks and banks will charge 4% from customers. The loan will be repayable within 18 months including 6 months grace period.
20 April - Refinance Scheme of BDT 30bn (approx. USD 357m) for low income professionals, farmers, micro businessmen:
The scheme will be financed from BB's own sources. Loan limit to individual customer is BDT 75k to BDT 3m. BB will charge 1% interest to banks, banks will charge 3.5% interest to Micro Credit Financing Institutions (MCFIs) and MCFIs will charge 9% interest to customer. Customers will repay loan within 1 to 2 years including grace period.
12 May - Remittance incentives:
Expatriate Bangladeshis can get 2% incentives without showing any paper on remittance upto $5,000 (earlier $1,500) and for more than $5,000 papers need to submit within 2 months (earlier 15 days).
Stimulus packages of BDT 677.5bn (approx. USD 8bn)
Package 1: Government to provide BDT 300bn fund for banks to provide working capital loan facilities to the affected industries. These loans will carry interest at rate of 9%, half to be borne by borrower and half by Government as a subsidy. BB has published a circular detailing about eligibility, application, management and other terms of the package on 12 April. On 23 April BB has established Revolving Refinance Scheme of BDT 150bn to ensure financing by banks. Banks can borrow 50% of loan disbursed from BB at 4% interest rate.
Package 2: Government to provide BDT 200bn fund for banks to provide working capital loan facilities to Small (cottage industries) and medium enterprises. These loans will carry interest at rate of 9%, of which 4% to be borne by borrower and 5% by Government as a subsidy. BB has published a circular detailing about eligibility, application, conditions, reporting and other terms of the package on 13 April. On 26 April BB has established Revolving Refinance Scheme of BDT 100bn to ensure financing by banks. Banks can borrow 50% of loan disbursed from BB at 4% interest rate.
Package 3: Under Back-to-Back LC arrangement, the Export Development Fund will be increased from USD 3.5bn to USD 5bn for facilitating further import of raw materials. Interest rate will be 2%. BB has issued a circular on 7 April to implement the package.
Package 4: Central bank to launch BDT 50bn pre-shipment credit refinance scheme. BB has issued a circular detailing application method, payment method, reporting and other conditions of the package. It will be financed from BB's own source. BB will charge interest 3% from banks and banks will charge 6% from customers.
21 July - Access to finance from domestic sources against overseas guarantees:
GFET, Vol-1 restricts lending against overseas guarantees or collateral outside Bangladesh regardless of ownership/controlling status of borrowing entities. Given the ongoing situation due to covid-19 pandemic, it has been decided that banks/NBFIs may extend admissible Taka finance against overseas guarantees (preferable bank guarantee/standby letters of credit) to resident companies irrespective of ownership/controlling status; subject to adherence to all applicable credit norms and prudential parameters, and observance of the conditions provided in the circular