Interest rate of postal savings tools to go up again from Mar 17: FnM

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Dhaka, Feb 26: Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal on Wednesday said the interest rate of postal savings instruments will go up again from March 17 next once the automation process of the Directorate of Posts completes.He made the remarks while talking to reporters after a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Public Purchase.

The minister said the interest rate which was brought down to 6 percent on February 13 will jump to 11.28 percent again. “We’re now doing the automation work in the Directorate of Posts to see who are actually buying savings instruments,” he said.

He also expressed the hope that the task will be completed by March 17 when the nation will celebrate the birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

Mustafa Kamal also said the ceiling for buying of postal savings certificates for individuals will remain at highest Tk 30 lakh and low-income people can buy savings tools of upto Tk 2 lakh without any document.

But if anyone wants to buy documents of higher amount, they must have tax identification number (TIN) certificates and submit the documents to post offices.

On February 13, the government slashed the interest rate on savings certificates at post office by half to facilitate implementation of the single-digit interest rate in the country’s banking sector.

According to a gazette notification published by the Internal Resources Division under the Finance Ministry, the interest rate on three-year fixed deposit was reduced to 6 percent from 11.28 percent on maturity.

The interest rate for the first year and second year of the deposit was set at 5 percent and 5.5 percent from previous 10.20 percent and 10.70 percent respectively.

Meanwhile, the interest rate on savings in ordinary accounts of post office was also reduced to 5 percent from 7.5 percent.

The decision triggered huge criticisms from depositors while economists said it would severely affect the middle-class and pension holders.

Against the backdrop, the finance minister last week told reporters that they would revisit the decision.