Market Digest

BB to set bank hours today

Staff correspondent

27 June, 2021 12:00 AM printer

Bangladesh Bank (BB) is going to decide Sunday about banks’ transaction hours during the strict lockdown beginning from Monday.

The central bank will also set guidelines for banks and other financial institutions for the period. The government has announced a fresh seven-day strict lockdown from Monday when all the offices except emergency services will be closed to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

BB already held a meeting with the heads of different departments and private banks’ managing directors or their representatives. The meeting discussed about smooth operation of financial transaction system and clearing of payments for export-import trading, said a senior official at the central bank.

The official hinted that the banking operation might be limited within two hours during the strict lockdown and online deposit and withdrawal of cash would be preferred.

Earlier on April 13, Bangladesh Bank said the banks would conduct general transactions from 10 am to 1 pm and remain open until 2:30 pm for necessary works after every working day.

Later, the limited operation hours of banks were extended as the spread of the virus slowed down.

The BB instructions then also asked the banks to keep adequate banknotes at ATM booths with ensuring health protection and sanitization measures.

In addition, the BB asked the banks to ensure uninterrupted internet banking services with adequate supports.

The earlier circular asked the banks to keep the head offices, Authorized Dealers’ (ADs) branches, local principal offices, banks’ main branches in every district headquarters and banks’ single branch in every two kilometers in city corporation areas (if there is no AD).

Besides, a branch of each bank at Upazila level was kept open on alternate days of the week- Thursdays, Sundays and Tuesdays.

The banks were instructed to arrange transportations for its staff during the strict lockdown period or pay actual transport fares to them.