Banks will remain open for transactions from 10:00am to 4:00pm, but will operate from 10:00am to 2:30pm in medium and high-risk areas prone to coronavirus
All banks as well the country's two bourses are set to resume their regular operations from Sunday, with strict enforcement of safety and hygiene related guidelines amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Bangladesh Bank on Thursday asked banks to resume regular banking activities from today, moving away from banking in limited capacity due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Meanwhile, Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) and Chittagong Stock Exchange (CSE) on Thursday also decided to resume share trading from Sunday upon receiving the approval from Bangladesh Securities and Exchanges Commission (BSEC).
Banks will remain open for transactions from 10:00am to 4:00pm, but will operate from 10:00am to 2:30pm in medium and high-risk areas prone to coronavirus, a central bank circular said.
The BB circular also said bank branches or booths will remain open 24 hours and seven days a week in port and customs house areas.
In case of limited public transport, respective banks will have to take responsibility for transportation for their officers and staff, while social distancing must also be ensured in bank premises and offices, as per the circular.
The circular also stated that officials and employees feeling unwell, as well as pregnant women, should be discouraged to come to office.
Stock markets to reopen
The decision to resume share trading was taken at a BSEC commission meeting on Thursday, presided by its new chairman Prof Shibli Rubayat Ul Islam.
From Sunday, trading in both the stock exchanges will take place from 10:30am to 1:30pm without any break instead of the regular trading hours from 10:30am to 2:30pm.
It was the first commission meeting of the newly appointed chairman, as well as its two commissioners.
The two stock exchanges remained closed since March 26, as the government announced general holidays as part of its efforts to contain the spread of the novel virus.
The DSE key index lost 683 points, wiping out market capitalization of Tk44,000 crore as of March 18 since Bangladesh confirmed the first three cases of coronavirus outbreak on March 8.
On March 19, BSEC launched a new circuit breaker to halt the free-fall that yielded positive outcome in the indexes.
The new emergency circuit breaker rule was set so that the prices of securities do not go below their average prices from the previous five sessions – from March 19.
The government's general holiday ended on Saturday.