The Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) recently demanded exemption from repayment of at least Tk 649 cr in principal amount of loans and interests for 133 ‘sick’ readymade garment (RMG) units. BGMEA President Rubana Huq requested Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal for 1 per cent special cash incentive without any condition.

In the Budget for fiscal 2019-20, the government had announced 1 per cent cash incentive for RMG exporters, but the Bangladesh Bank imposed some conditions to avail the benefit. BGMEA President’s charter of demands included rescheduling facility for small and medium garment enterprises and allowing factories to cancel or renew their licences with the waiver of all outstanding taxes. She also demanded compensation for the sector through additional provision of Tk 2-5 against each dollar on the value they retained and retrospective effect of 0.25 per cent source tax from July.

She urged the Minister to set the maximum interest rate for packing credit and to allow higher advance payment for defined category and also demanded a special fund for innovation to ensure product diversification to remain competitive in the world market.