Saturday, July 4, 2020 | ePaper

PM announces waving Tk 2000cr bank interest of Covid-hit people

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Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday announced a new stimulus package to waive Taka 2000 crore bank interests of the people affected badly by the nationwide shutdown enforced to contain the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
"Today, we're declaring a new incentive package which is the 19th. Under the package, the borrowers need not to repay Taka 2000 crore interest of the credits which they took from the banks for doing business," she said.
Sheikh Hasina added: "The government will provide the interest amounting to Tk 2000 crore to the banks as a subsidy and it will directly benefit nearly 1.38 crore loan recipients."
The premier made the announcement while formally publishing the SSC and other equivalent exam results through a videoconference from her official Ganabhaban residence here this morning.
She said the government earlier suspended the payment of interest of the loans for two months which the people took from the (commercial) banks for business purpose.
"The total amount of that interest now stands at Tk 16,549 crore and of the money, the government will give Tk 2000 crore to the (commercial) banks as a subsidy and the loan borrowers don't need to pay it … we're freeing them from it (interest)," she said.
In this connection, Sheikh Hasina said the borrowers will pay the rest of the interest in 12-month installments.
"The government has made this arrangement for the benefit of the people as their trade and commerce remained halted for over two months due to coronavirus outbreak," she said.
"We've taken these measures so that the people are not plagued with the burden of the loans," she added.
The premier said with the announcement of this new incentive package of Tk 2000 crore, the total amount of 19 stimulus packages has stood at Tk 1,03,117 crore (equivalent to US Dollar 12.13 billion) which is 3.7 percent of total GDP.
"I don't know whether any other country of the world gave such facilities. But we're giving," she said.
Sheikh Hasina said the government has announced special stimulus packages for all sections of the people in view of the COVID-19.
"We've given incentive of Taka 5000 crore to farmers at low interest rate to offset the agricultural fallout of the coronavirus," she said.
The premier mentioned that the government declared separate stimulus packages for the big, medium and small industries including cottage industries so that they can overcome the losses caused by the pandemic.
"Even, we've provided special stimulus package for those who do small business and run shops by taking microcredit," she said.

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