Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal said the recent interest rate cuts on savings certificates and wage-earner bonds would not affect the small savers and investors.
"With these interest cuts, the marginalised people and also those who keep small investment in savings certificates would not be affected," he told journalists Wednesday after the meetings of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs and the Cabinet Committee on Government Purchase.
The minister said the savings certificates usually target the marginalised people and also the pensioners. But the government recently has noticed that all are rushing towards the savings tools thanks to the comparatively higher interest rates.
"If such a trend continues, the other drivers of the economy will become stagnant," he added.
Kamal said although the interest rates on savings certificates have been slashed, there was no cut on the rates with an investment of up to Tk15 lakh considering the marginalised section of people.
"But, still the interest rates of savings certificates are higher than other deposits now available in the market," he noted.
The minister said these new rates will not affect the present investments as those will only apply to fresh investments.
According to the new rules, which came into effect on Tuesday, the higher the investment amount, the lower the returns will be. If the investment amount is higher than Tk15 lakh, investors will get a lower interest rate, according to a circular of the Internal Resources Division (IRD) of the Ministry of Finance.
Asked whether the government wants to discourage people towards savings tools, Kamal said the government wants to motivate those sections of people to savings tools who truly require those.
Citing an example, Kamal said the government does not want anyone to invest Tk1 crore in savings certificates, rather the investment could range between Tk1 lakh to Tk30 lakh.
The finance minister said the recent cuts have been made considering the rates of deposits in other banks, and also the interest of the marginal investors.
He, however, informed that rationalisation of the interest rates on the savings certificates is an ongoing process and the rates might go up or down.
Govt to procure 11cr syringes for ongoing Covid vaccination
The government Wednesday approved a proposal in principle to procure some 11 crore auto-disable (AD) syringes and also more in future as per the requirements from JMI Syringes and Medical Devices Limited to bolster the vaccination campaign.
The finance minister said that the Directorate General of Drug Administration under the Health Services Division would procure the syringes.
He said, "JMI is a well-reputed company and only syringes would be procured from them under the proposal."
Kamal said the government Wednesday also approved another proposal for procuring an additional 80,000 tonnes of heavy fuel oil by the Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC) through G2G basis from the supplier on an emergency basis.