Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN)– Bangladesh’s overall imports dropped by 15.62 per cent in February over the previous month due to the lower purchase of consumer goods, industrial raw materials and capital machinery, officials said.
The actual import in term of the settlement of letters of credit (LCs) along with import without LCs came down to $3.46 billion in February from $4.10 billion in January 2017. It was $3.70 billion in December 2016, according to the central bank’s provisional data.
The opening of LCs, known as import orders, along with without LCs also fell by 13.69 per cent to $3.96 billion last month from $4.59 billion the month before. It was $4.48 billion in December last year.
Talking to BBN, a senior official of the Bangladesh Bank (BB) said the overall import decreased slightly during the period mainly due to lower import of consumer goods and industrial raw materials.
The import of overall consumer goods decreased to $439.47 million in February 2017 from $516.66 million in January, while import purchase of industrial raw materials fell $1.24 billion from $1.49 billion.
Lower import of capital machinery has also pushed down the overall imports in the month of February over the previous month, the central banker explained.
The import of capital machinery or industrial equipment used for production dropped by nearly 20 per cent to $284.92 million in February from $355.16 million a month ago, the BB data showed.
The BB official believed that the import of capital machinery imports will pick up in the coming months for the implementation of ongoing infrastructure projects across the country.
Currently, the government is implementing nine projects under a Fast Track Project Monitoring Committee, headed by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
“The overall import decreased in the month of February on lower working days. But it is still at a satisfactory level considering the overall economic performance,” another central banker explained.
However, the import of petroleum products also dropped by nearly 13 per cent to $202.83 million in February from $232.77 million a month before.
Import of capital machinery increased by nearly 65 per cent to $ 3.22 billion in the seven months to January of this fiscal year against $ 1.95 billion during the same period of FY 16, the BB data showed.

BBN/SSR/AD