Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN)– Bangladesh’s overall imports grew by 14.75 per cent in the first four months of the current fiscal year (FY) mainly due to higher import of capital machinery.
The actual import in terms of settlement of letters of credit (LCs) rose to US$15.14 billion during the July-October of FY 2016-17 from $13.19 billion in the same period of the previous fiscal.
On the other hand, opening of LCs, generally known as import orders, rose by 14.45 per cent to $ 14.89 billion in the first four months of FY 17 from $13.01 billion in the same period of the previous fiscal.
Talking to BBN, a senior official of the Bangladesh Bank (BB) said, the overall imports increased significantly during the period mainly due to higher import of capital machinery and industrial raw materials.
He also said the rising trend of importing capital machinery is expected to continue in the coming months for implementation of the different ongoing infrastructure development projects across the country.
Currently, the government is implementing nine projects under a Fast Track Project Monitoring Committee, headed by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for quick implementation.
Import of capital machinery or industrial equipment used for production rose by 82.90 per cent to $2.09 billion in the first four months of this fiscal year against $1.14 billion of the same period of FY 16, according to the central bank latest statistics.
Higher import for textile, leather, jute, garment, pharmaceutical, ship building and energy and power sectors contributed to rise in the overall capital machinery imports, the central banker explained.
Similarly, industrial raw material import grew by more than 8.0 per cent to $5.32 billion during the period under review from $4.92 billion in the same period of the FY 16.
During the period, import of machinery for miscellaneous industries witnessed a 5.33 per cent growth to $1.63 billion from $1.55 billion in the same period of the previous fiscal.
Import of intermediate goods, like coal, hard coke, clinker and scrap vessels, increased by nearly 3.0 per cent to $1.04 billion in the first four months of this fiscal from $1.01 billion in the same period of the FY 16.
However, import of petroleum products dropped by 17.43 per cent to $705.49 million during the July-October period of FY 17 from $854.41 million in the same period of the previous fiscal.
Import of consumer goods decreased by 0.65 per cent to $1.49 billion during the first four months of this fiscal from $1.50 billion in the same period of the FY 16, the BB data showed.
Food-grain imports, particularly of rice and wheat, dropped by more than 11 per cent to $390.05 million during the period of the FY 17 from $440.24 million in the same period of the FY 16.