Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) has identified the year 2017 as year of banking scam.
"The year 2017 will be remembered as year of banking scam," said CPD’s distinguished fellow Dr Debapriya Bhattacharya at a press briefing on the half year review of the country's economic situation at Cirdap Auditorium in Dhaka on Saturday.
The local think-tank arranged the briefing to present its observations of the latest state of Bangladesh economy.
CPD research fellow Tawfiqul Islam made a presentation on the country's economic situation while other officials including distinguished fellow Dr Mustafizur Rahman, Executive Director Fahmida Khatun and Research Director Dr Khandoker Golam Moazzem spoke on the occasion.
Debapriya said a series of scam has already marked the fiscal year 2017-18 which actually is a reflection of the government's stance on the reforms in banking sector.
He believed there will be no end to the current crisis in the country's banking sector soon. He said the incidents of scam in banking sector took place one after another. But there was no bold step against the scam from the top policymaking level.
The CPD's analysis was mainly focused on the banking sector, Rohingya issue and impact of the floods.
Debapriya said the overall economic situation has been under tremendous pressure following the three major happenings in the country.
The necessary reforms which are very essentials for overcoming the banking sector crisis are not advancing much. Rather, those are going backward and situation in banking sector came out to be the biggest example of the economic failure.
Giving a brief account on the scams and incidents in the banking in the year 2017, he said the amount of non-performing loans and default loans are on the rise while Statutory Liquidity Ratio (SLR) went below the required level in some banks and the influence of some quarters has increased.
He said the cash deficit of the state-owned banks was met by the public money from budgetary allocations and ownership of some private banks was changed through administrative measures.
Debapriya mentioned that the private banks, which were given licenses on the political consideration, failed performing and there were incidents of money laundering through some banks.
"But, unfortunately instead of taking any preventive measures, the government has increased the control of the family members of bank owners through amending the banking law and regulations", he said.
He blamed the weakness and lapses in the country's economic management for such a grim situation in banking sector and observed that the Finance Ministry failed to play its due role in tackling the situation.
He thought that the lack of courage and initiative made the situation worsened and that was the main problem for the banking sector.