Govt to resume divestment of state-owned cos: Muhith

Staff Correspondent | Published: 01:52, Dec 15,2016


Finance minister AMA Muhith on Wednesday said the government would resume stalled divestment process of the state-owned companies’ shares in the stock markets soon.
He said divestment process of the state-owned companies was suspended due to reform in the stock market after the worst share market crash in 2010-11.
Muhith was speaking during a meeting with the leaders of the newly elected DSE Brokers’ Association of Bangladesh at the secretariat.
In 2005, the government selected 26 state-owned companies and companies in which government owns shares, including Unilever and Aventis, for offloading certain portion of the shares in the market.
Some shares of the state-owned companies including Titas, DESCO, Jamuna Oil, Eastern Lubricants, Bangladesh Shipping Corporation and Rupali Bank have so far been divested in the share market.
But the process of further offloading of shares by the companies and others has remained stalled for last few years.
Muhith said preparation for off-loading shares by some public companies was at advanced stage.
He said a positive meeting in this connection was held recently.
Earlier, the brokers’ association demanded that the government should resume the divestment of state-owned companies’ shares.
They also demanded that the merchant banks should be allowed to raise Tk 6,000 crore by issuance of bonds for supplying money in the capital market.
They sought extension of tax holiday for Dhaka Stock Exchange for two more years.
The association urged the government to allow disbursement of Asian Development Bank’s loan for the share market by the Bangladesh Securities and Stock Exchange Commission.
On the demand for issuance of bonds Muhith asked the association leaders to give specific proposal and assured them of examining the proposal.
He also assured the association to review other demands.
DBA leaders including its president Ahmad Rashid and senor vice-president Mostaque Ahmed Sadeque and vice president Khugesta Nur-E-Naharin were present during the meeting.

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