BB to check money laundering thru export-import

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Bangladesh Bank has requested the country’s major trade bodies to give suggestions to prepare fit and black lists of foreign buyers so that the country can check money laundering by businessmen through export and import, said officials of the central bank.
The BB issued separate letters to Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association and Bangladesh Textile Mills Associations on January 22 seeking suggestions and recommendations in this regard.
A BB official told New Age on Monday that the parliamentary standing committee on the finance ministry had earlier asked the finance ministry to prepare fit and back lists of foreign buyers to prevent money laundering and financial scams.
As part of the directive, the finance ministry issued a letter to the BB on December 21 last year asking the central bank to upload the lists on its web site on regular basis.
The ministry also asked the central bank to update the lists in time, the official said.
The parliamentary standing committee on the finance ministry after conducting an investigation into the Hallmark Group-Sonali Bank loan scam recently placed a number of recommendations before the government to check such fraudulent act and loan scam in the banking sector.
Exporters usually export their products to foreign buyers on contractual basis instead of letters of credit, the BB official said.
Banks take responsibility against the exports and imports under the LC process, but they do not have any liability for any fraudulent act in the course of export and import on contractual basis, he said.
Some unscrupulous businesspeople set fake buyers in the foreign countries to export their products and they do not repatriate their export earnings to the country, the BB official said.
Sometimes, the businesspeople receive credit from banks to import raw materials by showing the false export orders from their fake buyers, he said.
The ill-motivated businessmen do not repay the bank loans to embezzle fund, he said.
He said such type of fraudulent act would decrease in the coming days when the fit and black lists of foreign buyers would be prepared.
Exporters will not export their products to the black-listed foreign buyers, he said.
The BB thinks that the trade bodies have adequate information about the foreign buyers, he said.
The central bank will request the trade bodies to upload the lists on their respective web sites, he added.
Source: New Age

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