Sunday, September 20, 2020 | ePaper

A pro-people budget is a need of time

  • Print
FORMER Finance Minister AMA Muhith pointed out three major challenges; increasing the size of the national budget, realising more revenue, and improving the banking sector for his successor AHM Kamal who is going to unveil his first budget today in the Parliament. The octogenarian after presenting record number 12 budgets with leaving the economy in disorder expressed the opinion in an interview with a local newspaper. From the economic conundrum in share market, collapsed banking sector, debacle in remittance inflow, unfriendly business environment, shaky export-import, widespread corruption and development bubble --- when this is the overall situation of the economic sector; it will be really hard for the new minister to find out an escape route. Nevertheless, Muhith's suggestions are worthy.
Muhith said the size of the budget was low in relation to the gross domestic product because Bangladesh's tax-to-GDP ratio was the lowest in South Asia. During his tenure, the tax-to-GDP ratio rose from 9 per cent to 11 per cent, but it has to be raised to 15 per cent. Income tax accounts for only 30 to 35 per cent of the total revenue earned that should be 50 per cent. If it doesn't happen, efforts should be made to bring at least one crore people under the tax net within the next five years. Muhith said earnings from value-added tax (VAT) and Customs would increase automatically, and gave his support to multiple slabs of VAT. The bureaucrat-turned-politician said improving the condition of the banking sector is another challenge for the current Finance Minister. If a bank fails, it will create a serious crisis in the economy.
Muhith admitted he awarded many undue favours to the banks, which are needed to be controlled. Despite awarding a license for opening banks on political consideration, Muhith now opted for merging banks citing the number is too big. Muhith suggested for abandoning state-owned factories and losing enterprises. Sometimes, a defeated soldier knows the strategy to win as he tried but failed. The failed minister's suggestions are the reflections of his experience and the government can honestly follow the path to drive out the economy from the trap. What's true is that, we want a people-friendly pragmatic budget, not a tax-burdened one. A budget can't be a guideline to misuse hard-earned income of the common people.  


More News For this Category

Huge project cost unjustified and must be recast

 THE government is set to conduct the National Population Census-2002 at a cost of over Tk 1761 crore up from Tk 237 crore spent in previous census in 2011. What

Killing is so easy and our police so powerful: Need is change of criminal politics

A TEXTILE mill worker at Manikganj Sadar Upazila was killed by his co-workers with pumping high-speed air into his body through rectum. The victim Md Julhas worked at Akij Textile

Hand In Hand Toward A Sustainable Food Future

Qu Dongyu :Five years ago, world leaders agreed on the UN's 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals, with the aim of eradicating persistent global challenges such as hunger and

Vaccine Accessibility Priority Focus for 75th UNGA

Samira Sadeque :Key focuses of the upcoming 75th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) High Level Week will be the accessibility of vaccines and a renewed plea for

Readers’ Voice

Oh, Poor AmericaThese days I only watch CNN, so many things are happening in the USA that it has become like a Pandora box. The drama which is being played

Fragile future productivity shows poor development scenario of Bangladesh

Potential future productivity of Bangladesh is lower than not only the global average but also the South Asian region and the lower-middle-income countries' average, as per World Bank's Human

Russia`s involvement in Palestinian issue must be welcome

RUSSIA on Thursday said it would be a "mistake" to think lasting peace in the Middle East could be achieved without resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Moscow in a statement

Storytelling

Storytelling

Maria Hanif Al-Qassim :What do Walt Disney, Yuval Noah Harari and Steve Jobs have in common?Some may say fame, while others may say wealth. And while both may be

World Cleanup Day

World Cleanup Day

Prof. Dr. Ahmad Kamruzzaman Majumder :World Cleanup Day is observed on the third Saturday of September every year in an effort to keep the country clean. This year it

RAB, Police differ in investigation of attack on Ghoraghat UNO

A DINAJPUR court has recorded confessions of three witnesses under Section-164 in connection with a case filed over the attack on Ghoraghat Upazila Nirbahi Officer. The authorities, however, expressed their