Dhaka, Aug 26 (UNB) – Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed on Sunday said the crisis over the sale of rawhide of sacrificial animals will be over soon as the government has taken steps in this regard.
Talking to journalists at the Secretariat, he also said the government has no plan to export the rawhides to protect the local leather industry.
“We’ve talked to the leaders of Bangladesh Tanners Association, and they informed us that they would buy the rawhide despite the crisis,” the minister said.
He said they will resolve the persisting problems at the newly established Savar Tannery Industrial Estate (STIE).
As banks are reopened after the eid, Tofail said the tanners fund crunch will also be resolved. “So, the crisis over the rawhide will not be there.”
He said the main reasons behind the rawhide crisis are non-functioning of many tanneries at STIE, non-operation of Central Effluent Treatment Plant (CETP) there, problem over the ownership document of STIE land and lack of loan from the banks.
The minister said the government will do everything necessary for the development of the leather sector.
He said the government is not taking any move to export the rawhide as it will ruin the local leather industry. “The government is always careful about protecting a potential sector like the leather one.”
About the next general election, Tofail said it will be held as per the Constitution like other countries of the world.
He said BNP’s existence will be at stake if it does not join the 11th parliamentary elections.
Replying to a question, Tofail said the current government will act as the interim administration during the election without dissolving parliament.
He hinted that the September session can be the last one of the 10th parliament.
Singapore, Aug 27 (AP/UNB) — Asian stocks rose on Monday as a dovish speech by U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell and all-time highs on Wall Street gave markets a breather from trade tensions.
KEEPING SCORE: Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 index added 0.7 percent to 22,759.53 and South Korea's Kospi rose less than 0.1 percent to 2,293.67. Hong Kong's Hang Seng jumped 1.9 percent to 28,191.43. The Shanghai Composite rebounded 1.2 percent to 2,760.86. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.2 percent to 6,259.90. Taiwan's benchmark rose and Southeast Asian indexes were mostly higher.
WALL STREET: Major U.S. indexes finished higher on Friday, lifted by strong corporate earnings amid uncertainty from simmering trade tensions between the U.S. and China. The benchmark S&P 500 index closed at an all-time high, adding 0.6 percent to 2,874.69. It has now finished with a weekly gain in seven out of the last eight weeks. The Nasdaq composite and the Russell 2000 indexes also ended the day at all-time highs. The Nasdaq gained 0.9 percent to 7,945.98. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks picked up 0.5 percent to 1,725.67. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.5 percent, to 25,790.35.
DOVISH FED: U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell sketched a positive picture of the U.S. economy on Friday and said the Fed's incremental approach to raising rates has so far succeeded. "The economy is strong. Inflation is near our 2 percent objective, and most people who want a job are finding one. We are setting policy to do what monetary policy can do to support continued growth, a strong labor market and inflation near 2 percent," Powell said, at an annual conference of central bankers in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. The chairman's measured tone about the economy and his message that the Fed plans to stick with a gradual pace of rate hikes appeared to sit well with investors. The Dow Jones industrial average closed up 133 points — about half a percentage point — and bond prices rose as well.
TRADE TENSIONS: The United States and China have imposed 25 percent tariffs on $16 billion of each other's goods including automobiles, factory equipment and other goods. On Thursday, U.S. and Chinese negotiators ended two days of meetings without breaking a deadlock over trade that has unnerved financial markets and disrupted global commerce. Lindsay Walters, a White House spokeswoman, said the delegations exchanged views on achieving a balanced economic relationship, without mentioning further talks. China's Commerce Ministry said the talks were constructive and the sides would maintain contact, but didn't give details.
ANALYST'S TAKE: "The lingering theme from last Friday had been the Jackson Hole symposium which was perceivably dovish, enthusing equity markets into the end of the week," Jingyi Pan of IG said in a commentary. "Still, the watch lies with data as we head into the end of the month while keeping that keen eye on trade tensions after last week's failed talks," she added.
ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude fell 13 cents to $68.59 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract gained 1.3 percent to settle at $68.72 per barrel on Friday. Brent crude, used to price international oils, dropped 9 cents to $75.73 in London.
CURRENCIES: The dollar eased to 111.06 yen from 111.20 yen in late trading Friday. The euro rose to $1.1630 from $1.1625.
Dhaka, July 29 (UNB) - City Bank and bKash Limited on Sunday announced a strategic partnership, enabling their customers to enjoy a bundle of services, including instant fund transfer between bank account to bKash account, credit card bill payment and cash withdrawal from ATM by bKash customers.
Managing Director and CEO of City Bank Sohail RK Hussain and Chief Executive Officer of bKash Kamal Quadir signed an agreement in this regard on behalf of their respective organizations at the head office of City Bank.
Under this agreement, City Bank customers will be able to transfer fund instantly from their City Bank account to bKash wallet using Bank’s digital banking platform called Citytouch via mobile app and web.
Similar facility of instant fund transfer from bKash account to City Bank account will also be available.
Moreover, City Bank credit card members will be able to pay their credit card bills from their bKash wallet while bKash customers will be able to withdraw cash from any of the 350 City Bank ATMs across the country.
Sohail Hussain said the strategic partnership will begin a new era in country’s payment system. “We have always been very proud of our digital banking platform Citytouch and this integration with the top mobile financial company like bKash will give some unique benefits to our customers.”
Commenting on the partnership, Kamal Quadir said bKash, City Bank partnership creates tremendous opportunities for City Bank customers to avail all bKash services including reaching out 30 million bKash customers.
The agreement signing ceremony was also attended by Mashrur Arefin, Additional MD, Kazi Azizur Rahman, DMD and Chief Information Officer, Arup Haider, Head of Retail Banking, Mustafizur Rahman, Head of Alternate Delivery Channel of City Bank and Mizanur Rashid, Chief Commercial Officer, Mohammad Azmal Huda, Chief Technology Officer, Mir Nawbut Ali, Chief Marketing Officer and Major General Sheikh Md Monirul Islam (retd), Chief External and Corporate Affairs Officer of bKash and other senior officials from both organizations.
New York, July 28 (AP/UNB) — CBS said Friday it is investigating personal misconduct claims after the company's chief executive, Les Moonves, was the subject of a New Yorker story detailing sexual misconduct allegations.
The media company said independent members of its board of directors are "investigating claims that violate the company's clear policies" regarding personal misconduct.
CBS Corp.'s stock fell 6 percent — its worst one-day loss in nearly seven years — as the reports of the misconduct allegations began to circulate around noon Friday, triggering investor concerns Moonves might be forced to step down. The CBS chief has been a towering figure in television for decades, credited with turning around a network that had been mired for years at the bottom ratings.
The New York-based company did not mention Moonves by name but said it issued a statement in response to the New Yorker article, which was published on the magazine's website late Friday. The article was written by Ronan Farrow, who wrote a Pulitzer Prize-winning story last year for the same magazine uncovering many of the allegations against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein
The article says six women who had professional dealings with Moonves say he sexually harassed them between the 1980s and late 2000s. Four of the women described forcible touching or kissing during business meetings, it says, while two said that Moonves physically intimidated them or threatened to derail their careers.
Among the women quoted in the article were the actress Illeana Douglas, writer Janet Jones and producer Christine Peters. Farrow told The Associated Press that all the women quoted in the article had to overcome "a lot of fear of retaliation to tell very serious stories of sexual misconduct about Les Moonves."
Moonves acknowledged in a statement that there were times decades ago when he may have made some women uncomfortable by making advances. But he says, "Those were mistakes, and I regret them immensely."
He said that he never misused his position to harm or hinder anyone's career.
The New Yorker article also said a culture of misconduct extended from Moonves to other parts of the corporation, including CBS News. It said men in that division who were accused of sexual misconduct were promoted, even as the company paid settlements to women with complaints.
CBS said that once the investigation by its independent board members is completed, the full corporate board will review the findings and "take appropriate action."
It took issue in a statement with the New Yorker article, however, for not accurately representing "a larger organization that does its best to treat its tens of thousands of employees with dignity and respect."
Mooves is the latest media giant to become embroiled in sexual misconduct allegations since the downfall of Weinstein in October triggered the #metoo social media movement.
In November, CBS fired veteran news host Charlie Rose over allegations he had groped women, walked naked in front of them and made lewd phone calls. Rose has apologized for his behavior but questioned the accuracy of some of the claims.
In December, Moonves joined a meeting of chief executives of nearly every major Hollywood studio, TV network and record label to establish a commission to comb sexual misconduct in the industry. They agreed to fund the Commission On Sexual Harassment and Advancing Equality in the Workplace, and chose Anita Hill to chair it.
The allegations come as CBS is in the middle of a legal battle with its controlling shareholder, National Amusements, which has been pushing for a merger with Viacom, also controlled by National Amusements.
CBS and Viacom were once part of the same company, known as Viacom, but were split in 2005 into separate entities, both controlled by Sumner Redstone. His daughter, Shari Redstone, has been pushing to reunite the companies under one corporate umbrella. Moonves has been opposed to the deal.
CBS said its current "management team has the full support of the independent board members" in the ongoing litigation involving National Amusements. The legal case is being played out in Delaware court.
National Amusements jumped into the controversy with a statement denying what it called "the malicious insinuation that Ms. Redstone is somehow behind the allegations of inappropriate personal behavior by Mr. Moonves or today's reports."
"Ms. Redstone hopes that the investigation of these allegations is thorough, open and transparent," the company said.
Moonves, one of the most powerful executives in media, has led CBS for two decades, including the 12 years since it split from Viacom.
He revived the company, which operates the CBS network, Showtime and other entities, with hit shows like "NCIS" and "The Big Bang Theory."
He also introduced separate streaming CBS and Showtime services as more people "cut the cord" and watch TV online. The network consistently tops in prime-time ratings.
While CBS's stock took a hit, Viacom's rose sharply as investors anticipated that a combination of CBS and Viacom could become more likely should Moonves be forced out. Viacom closed up 4.6 percent.
Moonves was the No. 2 highest paid CEO of a major public company in 2017, according to an analysis by The Associated Press and Equilar, an executive data firm. He made $68.4 million last year, behind only chip maker Broadcom's CEO.
Before joining CBS, he was president of Warner Bros. Television, where he oversaw the development of hit TV shows "Friends" and "ER."
Moonves, who is married to TV personality and CBS producer Julie Chen, was inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame in 2013. He also won the Milestone Award from the Producers Guild of America that year.
New York, Jul 26 (AP/UNB) — Facebook may be heading for its worst day on the markets in its history a day after the company revealed that user growth, amid swirling questions about how their information is used, has slowed.
The stock plunged 19 percent in early trading Thursday, eradicating well in excess of $100 billion in market value.
The social media company's financial results, released late Wednesday, fell short of Wall Street expectations as the company continues to grapple with privacy issues. It also warned that revenue would decelerate as it promotes new products
Facebook had 2.23 billion monthly users as of June 30, up 11 percent from a year earlier, but well short of what industry analysts had been expecting.
The results are from the first full quarter following the revelation of the Cambridge Analytica privacy scandal. The company is also contending with European privacy rules that went into effect in May.