2251Published on May 31, 2020
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has announced a new stimulus package to waive Tk2,000 crore bank interest of the people affected badly by the nationwide shutdown enforced to contain the coronavirus pandemic.
“Today (Sunday), we are declaring a new incentive package which is the 19th. Under the package, the borrowers need not to repay Tk2,000 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 Tk2,000 crore to the banks as a subsidy and it will directly benefit nearly 13.8 million 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 on Sunday 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 Tk16,549 crore and of the money, the government will give Tk2,000 crore to the (commercial) banks as a subsidy and the loan borrowers do not need to pay it … we are 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 instalments.
“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 have 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 Tk2,000 crore, the total amount of 19 stimulus packages has stood at Tk103,117 crore (equivalent to US Dollar 12.13 billion) which is 3.7% of total GDP.
“I do not know whether any other country of the world gave such facilities but we are 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 have given an incentive of Tk5,000 crore to farmers at a 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 have provided special stimulus package for those who do small business and run shops by taking microcredit,” she said.