Business confidence in Bangladesh increases in slow pace

Staff Correspondent | Published: 14:04, Feb 16,2021


Business confidence of the country’s manufacturing and service sectors increased slightly in January-March quarter of the current fiscal year 2021 from that of October-December quarter of the year, according to survey findings.

Overall Business Confidence Index in the country increased to 57.90 for the January-March period compared to 55.24, on a scale of 0 to 100, for the period of October-December, according to the South Asian Network on Economic Modelling.

SANEM and the Asia Foundation jointly organised the programme titled ‘COVID-19 and business confidence in Bangladesh’ to disseminate the findings of the third-round survey conducted in January among 502 firms across the country.

The rate of regaining business confidence, however, became slowed down in the period compared to the recovery level in previous quarter due to slowdown in external and domestic demands amid second wave of the coronavirus outbreak, SANEM executive director Selim Raihan said at a virtual dialogue.

The BCI score was 51.06 for the first quarter — July-September — of the year.

Businesses also reported that the score of cost of doing business significantly increased during October-December period of 2020 compared with previous quarter, he said.

According to the survey, 71 per cent respondents said that the economy of the country was on the way to economic recovery.

Of them, 40 per cent, however, termed the recovery level as moderate one.

SANEM also prepared a Present Business Status Index to understand the current situation of manufacturing and services sector.

Although the score of PBSI increased, the rate of improvement slowed down in October-December 2020 compared to both year-on-year October-December 2019 and July-September quarter of 2020, according to the survey.

PBSI year-on-year improved to 36.50 for October-December 2020 period from that of 34.23 in the same period of 2019.

In July-September period, the PBSI was 26.44 on a scale of 0 to 100, it said.

Quarterly PBSI also increased very marginally to 48.83 for October-December quarter from 47.96 in previous quarter, the report showed.

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