Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN)– Bangladesh made a routine payment of US$ 815 million to the Asian Clearing Union (ACU) against imports during the July-August period of the current calendar year.
After the payment, the country’s foreign exchange (forex) reserve came down to $ 30.84 billion on Thursday from $ 31.50 billion of the previous working day, according to the central bank statistics.
“We’ve already remitted the fund to the ACU headquarters in Tehran in line with the existing provisions of the nine-member union,” a senior official of the Bangladesh Bank (BB) told BBN in Dhaka.
Under the existing provisions, outstanding import bills and interest are to be paid at the end of every two months among the member countries.
He also said Bangladesh is still in satisfactory position on the forex reserve mainly due to higher export earnings, but comparatively lower import payment obligations. “We’ll be able to settle around eight-month import bills with the existing forex reserve.”
The amount of such payment came down to $ 815 million in the last instalment from $ 972 million earlier following lower prices of different commodities in the international market, another BB official explained.
“We’re importing different consumer items, cotton, raw materials and capital machinery from the ACU member countries, particularly from India,” the central banker noted.
The ACU is an arrangement among Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Iran, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and the Maldives through which intraregional transactions among the participating central banks are settled on a multilateral basis.
The union started its operation in November 1975 to boost trade among the member countries. Bangladesh and Myanmar joined the union as the sixth and seventh members in 1976 and 1977 respectively. Bhutan joined the ACU in December 1999 and the Maldives in January 2010.