11 Jun 2024, 18:01
Update : 11 Jun 2024, 19:56

Proposed budget for FY25 realistic, feasible: IBFB

DHAKA, June 11, 2024 (BSS) - The International Business Forum of Bangladesh (IBFB) today said that the Taka 7,97,000 crore proposed budget for FY25 is realistic and feasible to materialize the government's commitment for meeting the needs and aspirations of the country's people.
The leaders of IBFB came up with such remarks at a press conference on "Proposed national budget 2024-25: expectations and receipts" held at the IBFB Conference Room in the capital today.
Humayun Rashid, President, IBFB and Managing Director and CEO of Energypac Power Generation Ltd. moderated the press conference.
IBFB said this year's budget has created an opportunity to take some medium-term reforms or steps on the eve of the graduation of the country as a middle-income one in 2026. In order to organize the basic structures of the economy, social income and expenditure management, the direction in the budget needs to be proposed more strongly while a budget increase of less than 5 percent will make it more difficult to meet future challenges.
The Forum sees a huge challenge in achieving the GDP growth target while reducing the inflation rate. "The rise in inflation must be curbed. If not, the sufferings of common people will increase."
It also called for the formation of a committee to harmonize the Income Tax Act and the Customs Act as a proposal has already been sent to the government to form the committee.
The IBFB said they had proposed to abolish Advance Income Tax (AIT) and Advance Tax (AT), but there was no reflection on this in the budget.
"Non-proper adjustment/refund of advance income tax increases operating expenses and affects working capital."
It also requested the government to reconsider the proposal to abolish Advance Income Tax (AIT) and Advance Tax (AT).
The IBFB said collecting such huge revenue will be a big challenge for the government as the country's macroeconomic indicators and the revenue collection process are under pressure due to the difficult situation prevailing worldwide.
In order to meet the budget deficit, it said bank management needs to reduce existing NPLs and take appropriate measures to remove money from the national debt. "Instead of the local banking system, attention can be paid to financing from foreign sources at the lowest possible interest rates and with caution."
The IBFB said they believe that these initiatives would strengthen social security and have a positive impact on the social economy. 
"The actual increase here has been negligible due to the inclusion of pension money in the budget allocation of the social security sector. It should also be ensured that this benefit reaches to the actual beneficiaries properly."
The IBFB applauds that the government has adopted a policy of zero tolerance against corruption to create a good governance-based administrative framework for genuine socio-economic development of the country. 
The Forum emphasized on maintaining the quality of work undertaken under the annual development program and to complete the work efficiently and on time as well as taking efficiency into account must so that the development is sustainable.
For the sake of keeping the domestic technology dependent engineering institutions alive, the IBFB said it is necessary to withdraw 1 percent CD at the import level on the raw materials (Engine, Alternator) of Diesel Generator assembling/manufacturing to realize the "Made in Bangladesh" dream of the Prime Minister and to build "Smart Bangladesh".
It said the need for electric vehicles is essential to ensure a viable alternative to harmful gas emissions.
The IBFB also called for a member of the judiciary to be the President of the Tribunal to make the Tax Appellate Tribunal impartial and independent and to ensure justice. 
At present, provision has been made to make a member of the NBR as the President. 
The Business Forum called for reconsidering the establishment of independent organization 'Tax Commissioner's Office' to ensure justice and fair treatment to taxpayers.
Finally, it said consistency in fiscal policy is essential so that investors can trade with confidence. That is why the IBFB said it is important to keep harmony between monetary policy and fiscal policy.
The IBFB said in the current global economic situation, the government has made all efforts to prioritize development, public welfare and business-friendly budget despite the limitations and adversities in various crises. 

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