Planning minister AHM Mustafa Kamal on saturday said that the budget for fiscal year 2017-18 will not affect the common people as the Jatiya Sangsad (JS) is expected to pass a people-oriented budget.
The minister came up with the assurance while speaking at the 'CPD Budget Dialogue 2017' at a hotel in the capital Saturday.
Mentioning that the lawmakers are now taking part in discussion on the proposed national budget for FY18, Mustafa Kamal told that we all are expecting that JS would pass a budget which will be passed people-oriented, implementable and acceptable, reports BSS.
He also assured that the present government will not take any step which will affect the common people.
"Discussion is taking place on the proposed budget in the Jatiya Sangsad . .. it will pass an implementable and acceptable budget because the present government will not take any step which will affect the common people," Mustafa Kamal told.
Centre For policy Dialogue (CPD), a civil society think-tank, organised the event with its chairman Professor Rehman Sobhan in the chair.
State minister for finance and planning MA Mannan, chairman of parliamentary standing committee on the finance ministry Dr Abdur Razzaque, principal coordinator of sustainable development goals (SDGs) affairs of Prime Minister's Office Md Abul Kalam Azad, former commerce minister Amir Khosru Mahmud Chowdhury, BNP's vice-chairman Inam Ahmed Chowdhury, former finance secretary Siddiqur Rahman Chowdhury, CPD's distinguished fellow Debapriya Bhattacharya, NBR member (VAT) Barrister Jahangir Hossain, former president of Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry Asif Ibrahim and managing director of Meghna Bank Nurul Amin, among others, took part in the discussion.
Former adviser to the caretaker government Dr Akbar Ali Khan offered comments as a distinguished discussant while CPD's executive director Dr Fahmida Khatun presented the keynote paper.
Distinguished fellow of CPD Mustafizur Rahman moderated the discussion.
The planning minister said the economy is achieving a steady growth and the employment is also increasing as a huge investment is taking place in the infrastructure sector.
"Over one core work force will enter the labour market in the next five years," he added.
Kamal said other export-oriented sectors along with the apparel one should be given cash incentive.
He also emphasized on increasing involvement of the people in the budget formulation process.
The state minister for finance and planning said the new VAT law has become the main point for discussion this time. VAT is a very rational tax system and 169 countries across the world have this tax system, he added.
About the 15 percent uniform VAT rate, he said the average global VAT rate is 14.8 percent and this rate is comparatively higher in the neighbouring countries. Mentioning the excise duty on bank accounts, he said there was such duty from British rule and the rate was adjusted upward at different times.
Dr Abdur Razzaque said investment in private sector is not encouraging and hoped that the situation will be changed in the next two year following the development in the power and infrastructure sectors.
Prof Rehman Sobhan suggested carrying out proper reforms in the state owned banks for increasing private investment. A political decision should be taken to come out loan default culture and stop providing capital to the state owned banks, he added.