Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal on Thursday said he is highly optimistic about improving country’s foreign exchange reserves in a short period of time.
“Hopefully, the reserve situation will improve in a short period of time,” he said at Parliament while placing the proposed budget for FY2023-24, his fifth consecutive as the finance minister.
The minister said that the growth in imports that declined in recent times has started returning to normal.
“Concurrently, we are carrying out export promotional activities to augment our export income. Steps are being taken for disbursement of foreign loans in the pipeline,” he said.
He mentioned that while achieving high growth is the goal of the government, it wants to lay greater emphasis on maintaining macroeconomic stability at the same time.
Already following the adoption of time-befitting strategy of the government, Kamal said, the instability in the balance of payment has lessened.
“We will remain cautious and adopt an accommodative policy in the coming financial year as well,” he added.
He said that the gap between the existing multiple exchange rates is being brought to a minimum level with the aim of making the exchange rate gradually market-oriented.
To rebuild the foreign exchange reserves, the minister said that the current initiatives of verifying the accuracy of the price of imported items along with implementation, and monitoring of procedural requirements on LC opening, disposal and related issues shall continue in future.
“To encourage the use of formal channels in sending remittances, a 2.5 percent incentive is provided and remitter-friendly processes are being promoted including the mobile financial services,” he said.
He also mentioned that all fees required for sending remittances through the Bangladeshi banks and exchange houses have been exempted.
“Thanks to these initiatives, our remittance income is on the increase.”