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Dhaka Tribune

WB likely to give budget support for FY 2015-16

Update : 27 May 2014, 09:27 PM

The World Bank is likely to extend budget support to Bangladesh in the fiscal year 2015-16 instead of the next fiscal year (2014-15), official sources said.

An official said it is not possible for them to give budget support in the next fiscal year because of time constraints as the budget will be placed at the parliament in the first week of next month.

Finance Minister AMA Muhith earlier hinted that the government would seek $500 million as budget support from the global lender. But an Economic Relations Division official said the figure would be of $300 million.

The matter was discussed briefly on the sidelines of the spring meeting of the WB and IMF which took place in Washington DC in early April.

During his visit to Bangladesh, Executive Director for South Asia MN Prasad advised that the finance minister should seek budget support after placing the budget for the next fiscal year at the parliament. He also said obviously it is not possible to give budget support this fiscal year.

Earlier, Bangladesh got budget support in 2008 with the conditions set by the global lender.

The ERD official said the government will have to carry out reforms of various sectors. After discussion with the WB, it will be decided where reforms will be made, he added.

The official said the country would not have much trouble in implementing the reform programmes as it is successfully running the IMF’s extended credit facility loan programme.

Arastoo Khan, additional secretary of the Economic Relations Division, said discussion on WB budget support continues. “We will seek offer from the World Bank for budget assistance within a short time and hope that we will get it for the fiscal year 2015-16.”

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