Backtracking on its previous decision, Bangla-desh Bank (BB) on Tuesday said banks will remain open from 10.00 am to 1.00 pm during the lockdown.
A BB instruction signed by General Manager of Department of Off-site Supervision Md. Anuwarul Islam, said banks will serve clients from 10.00 am to 1.00 pm. Banks can remain open till 2.30 pm to complete post-transaction activities.The central bank has cancelled its earlier decision of keeping banks closed as the cabinet division on Tuesday asked BB to take measures for ensuring banking services during the countrywide lockdown starting today.
The capital markets will remain open from 10.00 am to 12.30 pm from Sunday to Thursday during the lockdown. Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC) on Tuesday decided to keep both the share markets open in line with banking operations.
During the lockdown, the head office, Authorized Dealers (ADs), local principal office, banks’ main branch in every district headquarter, banks’ single branch in every two kilometres in city corporation areas (if there is no AD) has to be kept open.
Besides, a branch of each bank at upazila level will remain open on Thursday, Sunday and Tuesday with a one-day interval. Banks will have to arrange transportation for their staff during the lockdown.
Banks that have online facilities for cash deposits and withdrawals will ensure the overall convenience of customer transactions.
At the same time, banks operating within the two kilometres of the City Corporation and District Headquarters can conduct banking activities through internal coordination from a convenient branch (excluding the authorized dealer branch) to ensure smooth customer services.The bank branch / sub-branch / booth of the bank located in the sea/land / airport and customs house area have to be kept open.
The BB instruction also asked banks to keep adequate banknotes at ATM booths and ensure uninterrupted internet banking services.
The government has imposed strict restrictions from April 14 to April 21 to prevent any further spread of coronavirus. In line with the government’s instructions, BB on Monday said financial institutions and banks will remain closed during the lockdown.
However, different business groups have requested the government to keep banks open to meet the needs for financial transactions to facilitate uninterrupted goods supply during Ramadan.