IMF and Oligarchs win in proposed budget: AB Party

Published at : 10 June 2024, 07:40 pm
IMF and Oligarchs win in proposed budget: AB Party
Photo: Collected

Amar Bangladesh Party, AB Party, expressed its dismay at the recently proposed budget for FY 2024-25. 

The Party held a media briefing on Monday afternoon at its central office reacting to the anti-people budget with full of fake numbers and jargons. 

Prof. Dr. Abdul Wahab Minar, a retired major and Joint Convenor, Mojibur Rahman Monju, Member Secretary, Asaduzzaman Fuaad, a barrister-at-law and Joint Member Secretary, Nasreen Sultana Mily, a barrister-at-law and in charge of AB Party Women, were, amongst others, present at the briefing.

The leaders of the AB Party said it looks like the regime is so desperate to secure third instalment from IMF as part of its smooth line of credit, easing pressure on ever declining dollar reserve and balance of payment. Given that the proposed budget is debt and deficit based, it has no option but to seek budgetary assistance from local banks and international donor agencies to feed its deficit. 

They said this authoritarian regime’s endless loot and plunder crippled the nation’s economy, worst in country’s lifetime, and pushed the country into perpetual deb trap. Our repeated warning about the loan sharks was hardly listened to.  

The regime has been so eager to secure a meagre sum of US $4.7bn from IMF which they could save from internal sources by cutting costs, reducing unnecessary spendings and curbing on corruption. Unnecessary development projects at unusually high cost would put pressure on average regular tax payers who have been suffering from squeezed earning but skyrocketing expenses. Nevertheless, whitening black money has been made easier which hints the rulers’ priority, they added. 

The leaders of the AB Party further said the country can see that how the regime has failed for years to curb on inflation, increase investment rendering growth and employment as a result. Ever increasing loan defaulters put strain on domestic investment as banks are made empty and cash trapped. Budget has no guideline how to address and contain the oligarchs who are all too loyal to this regime.

Barrister Mily said GDP growth target is proposed at 6.7% yet the growth in the current fiscal year is around 5.8%, although the persistent data manipulation of the government makes it harder to believe. 

She said revenue collection plan is wrongheaded; while the NBR had never managed to raise over US $30bn, they were given target to raise around US$50 in next financial year amidst sluggish economic activities. 

"Tax burden upon the working and middle earning people looks like unbearable. Threshold remains at BDT350k like last year with 9% continuous inflation according to the government agencies. Real time inflation is 20-40% to varied daily commodities and different time of the year. Poorer families, specially women and children, would be hard hit," she added.