Difficult to drive economy right

Md Rezaul Karim By Md Rezaul Karim, 19th Feb 2012 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/3634yapr/
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Columns & Opinions

Development approach by adjusting Bank credit and controlling inflation in Bangladesh.

Inflation bite

Private sector credit growth, as the Bangladesh Bank (BB) has projected, will be somewhat lower during the current fiscal year (FY12) than that of the year 2010; the rationale is the need for taming the inflationary pressure. Maintenance of price stability is one major objectives of the BB's monetary policy which expects to bring down the inflation rate to a more tolerable level at around 7.5 per cent by the end of the current fiscal year; that is yet to be tamed to the desired level, considering the income level of the average citizen. The annual average rate of inflation went up to 8.8 per cent in June from 8.67 per cent in the previous month; the prices of many essential commodities have not yet shown any sign of coming down.

The impact of credit flow on the price situation should not be assessed only by its volume of expansion, in absolute terms. For all practical purposes, the use of credit and its sectoral disbursement pattern do also deserve a critical scrutiny. The monetary policy has to support economic growth, besides helping to maintain price stability. Credit is one critical input for supporting growth and spurring economic activities. To play effectively its growth-supporting role, credit has to be made available up to the required amounts, especially to undeserved but potential sectors like agriculture, industry, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) etc. While over-expansion of credit or its diversion to unproductive and wasteful uses and speculative purposes have to be discouraged to help contain inflationary pressures. Management of credit-related activities by the scheduled banks under proper monitoring arrangements by the central bank has also to be improved. Under the prevailing situation in Bangladesh, the latter is, perhaps, more important than putting blanket restrictions on credit flows.

In this context, it is heartening to note that the use of credit and the sectoral pattern of its flows showed some welcome features in the last fiscal, notwithstanding the fact that bank credit to the private sector overshot the annual projected target then in a situation where there was also reportedly diversion of sizable credit funds to speculative purposes like trading in stock market, real estate etc., particularly in the first half of the last fiscal year. The aggregate volume of private sector stood at Tk. 699.51 billion at the close of the last fiscal, showing a net growth of about 26%, coming on top of a 24.24% increase of such credits in the previous fiscal. However, the use of credit in private sector in fiscal 2010-2011 was, on the whole, reported to be somewhat more balanced than before; a substantial quantum of new credit flows had gone to growth-supporting sectors like agriculture, import of capital machinery, raw materials and spares, trading activities and small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Increased credit flow to the private sector paid dividends by helping increase aggregate output of goods and services. This was reflected in the growth rate of the country's gross domestic product (GDP) by 6.7 per cent, surpassing the 6.1 per cent growth rate of the previous fiscal. The latest economic review by the Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce & Industry (MCCI), Dhaka, does also corroborate this, particularly about the links between monetary policy and growth performance of the economy in fiscal 2010-2011.

Against this backdrop, the Bangladesh Bank should be vigilant and monitor properly the monetary and credit developments on a continuous basis throughout the current fiscal. Unwarranted credit restrictions must not hamstring productive activities in the private sector. Otherwise, such restrictions may stifle growth. The central bank must also remain pro-active on striking a delicate balance between the needs for supporting growth and stabilizing the macro-economy, particularly through abatement of inflationary pressure. Furthermore, credit flows not only to private sector but also to the government including public sector entities, should merit the attention of all concerned.

Tags

Budget, Controlling, Economy, Good Governance, Inflation

Meet the author

author avatar Md Rezaul Karim
I am a teacher engaged with the Southern University Bangladesh. I Like to use my spare time by writing and reading. I take it as a fun and source of inspiration in pursuing knowledge.

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Comments

author avatar Buzz
20th Feb 2012 (#)

Thanks, Md. Another insightful piece from you.

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author avatar Sheila Newton
21st Feb 2012 (#)

Banking the world over is a farce, not just in Bangladesh. A really interesting article. Made my mental juices flow.

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author avatar Md Rezaul Karim
22nd Feb 2012 (#)

Thanks for reading..

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author avatar Denise O
24th Feb 2012 (#)

A tight rope they must walk. Nice read. Thank you for sharing.:)

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author avatar Ivyevelyn, R.S.A.
26th Feb 2012 (#)

Thanks, Rezaul: Always pleased to receive information from you.

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author avatar Md Rezaul Karim
26th Feb 2012 (#)

Thanks friends.

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