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BFIU finds evidence of Tk 40 billion capital flight

Businesses did it thru export and import, unit head says

FE Report | August 01, 2018 00:00:00

A group of businesses is reported to have been involved in capital flight amounting to Tk 40 billion in disguise of imports and exports.

Bangladesh Financial Intelligent Unit (BFIU) has discovered the evidence of such an involvement.

The BFIU has also sent this information to the National Board of Revenue (NBR) and other law-enforcement agencies requesting them to further investigate the cases before moving towards prosecution.

BFIU head and Bangladesh Bank (BB) deputy governor Abu Hena Mohd Razee Hassan disclosed this on Tuesday while responding to the reporters at the monetary policy unveiling programme.

BB governor Fazle Kabir released the monetary policy for the first quarter of the fiscal year (FY), 2018-2019, at the central bank headquarters in the city.

The central bank chief shifted the responsibility to Mr. Hassan for replying to the question over apathy of some businessmen to import products even after opening letters of credits (L/Cs) and repatriate money of their exports.

Mentioning Swiss Bank's recent report where the volume of capital flight from Bangladesh shown to be on the declining path, he said the BFIU has "seriously" been looking into this matter.

"It's not like we're letting the issue of capital flight go unchallenged. It's being monitored properly," the BFIU head-cum-BB deputy governor said without giving any further details.

About the central bank's weakening supervision, BB deputy governor S. M. Moniruzzaman said they have been taking necessary measures within their jurisdiction once they found any irregularities during the inspection.

BB change Management Advisor Allah Malik Kazemi said the businesses will not open new L/Cs without importing goods in accordance with their previous L/Cs while business will be difficult for those who haven't repatriated export proceeds.

"This micro-level regulation is still active here," he said.

About the capital market stability, BB governor Fazle Kabir said there is undoubtedly enough liquidity in the market and the level of mismatch has come down.

At the same time, inter-bank interest rates in the money market have also reduced. "Both are important. I think congenial climate is persisting in the share market," he added.

Regarding the reported gold scam in the BB vault, the central bank chief said it has ensured foolproof security arrangement for the vault.

"There is a six-tier security system with the installation of 32 close circuit cameras in operation from round the clock. There is no scope for gold mismatch," he said.

About the BB US$81 million reserve heist, he said the unrealised money is being contested at various courts in the Philippines and the money will be brought bank once it is settled.

"We're hopeful," he added.


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