Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal said on Wednesday that some people launder money out of excessive greed for wealth, while others are criminal in nature and engage in such offenses.
Highlighting these two reasons behind the smuggling of money from the country, the Minister noted that the formation of the required laws is underway and that some laws are being amended to prevent money laundering.
âI also feel upset like you do when it comes to money laundering,â he said, answering a question.
Informing reporters after a virtual Cabinet Committee meeting on government procurement, Kamal said that initially the system should be updated by enacting and amending around 15 new and existing laws over the next six years. month.
“If we can find out who is swindling the country’s money using the system, then it will be easier to identify the smugglers and take action against them.”
Explaining the reasons for the smuggling of money, the Minister said that there are people, they are all over the world, who are laundering money due to excessive greed for wealth.
“I believe if we can create better investment opportunities, and if there are opportunities to make better profits, then none will be smuggling money overseas.”
Mr. Kamal noted that another reason (behind money laundering) is that some people are there, whose character is such that they would engage in crimes and try to launder money.
“We will definitely try to track them, get them into the system, and take legal action against them.”
He felt that everyone now knows how the money got smuggled out. When the smugglers are identified, legal action is taken against them; and dozens of these cases are currently pending.
“If cases can be resolved quickly and offenders can be punished, I think it will help keep people away from such offenses.”
“Many (delinquents) are still languishing in prisonsâ¦ because of the smuggling of money,” he added.
Responding to a question about loans of US $ 200 million in Sri Lanka, the minister said that those who take out loans can also extend credit to others.
“I once told parliament that now we are taking loans, but the time is not too far off when we will also give loans to others.”
Mr. Kamal mentioned that Bangladesh can now grant loans to others according to their capacity.
“If we can make a profit using the currency reserve and help neighboring countries, I think that’s a good thing.”
âProviding a loan will strengthen our relationship with the country and bring good returns. If we get a good return in this case, why not provide the loan? “
On a question regarding the delay in calculating the growth of gross domestic product (GDP), the Minister of Finance said that the completion of any work takes longer than in the past due to the abnormal situation related to the pandemic.
Meanwhile, the cabinet meeting approved the purchase of the design, development, supply, installation, testing and commissioning of telecommunications monitoring system for telecommunications networks and systems of Bangladesh from TKC Telecom Inc, Canada, at a cost of Tk 776 million.
The telecommunications monitoring system will mainly be used to automate the information collection and reporting process of the telecommunications operators, monitor their information in real time and ensure the timely receipt of statistics relating to voice and data traffic, use of the network and the quality of services.
In addition, it will also help the government to collect revenue by providing regular and reliable information.
The Council of Ministers also approved a proposal to purchase 1.235 million tonnes of fuel oil from Unipec Singapore Pte Ltd, Petro China International (Singapore) Pte Ltd, Vitol Asia Pte Ltd, Singapore and Emirates. National Oil Company Pte Ltd at a cost of Tk 57.74 billion over the period July-December.
The purchase of 3.36 million MMBTu (Metric Million British thermal unit) of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Excelerate Energy LP, in the United States, at a cost of Tk 3.13 billion, also obtained committee approval.
The meeting also approved a proposal to purchase 30,000 tonnes of bagged granular urea fertilizer from Karnaphuli Fertilizer Company Limited (KAFCO) at a cost of Tk 876.36 million.
The Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) has also been given the green light to purchase three passenger cruise ships from Karnaphuli Shipbuilders Ltd for Tk 2.31 billion.