Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN)– Bangladesh’s overall trade deficit increased slightly in the first two months of the current fiscal year (FY) 2016-17 for higher import payments against relatively lower export earnings.
The trade deficit rose by 5.0 per cent or US$25 million to $525 million during the July-August period in FY 17 from $500 million in the same period of the last fiscal year, according to the central bank’s latest statistics, released on Sunday.
During the period under review, the country’s overall import payments rose to $6.23 billion from $5.80 billion in the same period of the FY 16.
Talking to BBN, a senior official of the Bangladesh Bank (BB) said the overall trade deficit may widen further in the coming months if the declining trend in the export earnings continues.
The overall export earnings fell by 5.63 per cent to $2.24 billion in September 2016 from $2.37 billion in the same month of 2015.
The central banker said the import payments may rise in the coming months also as implementation of different infrastructure-development projects, including Padma Bridge, is being expedited.
On the other hand, the export earnings also stood at $5.71 billion in the first two months of this fiscal from $5.30 billion in the same period of the last fiscal, the BB data showed.
Trade deficit along with downtrend in inward remittances pushed down the current-account surplus during the period under review, the central banker explained.
Bangladesh’s current-account balance came down to $700 million during the period under review from $1.34 billion in the same period of the FY 16.
The surplus in overall balance of payments (BoP) also came down to $1.19 billion during the period under review from $1.27 billion in the same period of the FY 16.