The Dhaka Stock Exchange has offered to raise half of the fund for construction of the proposed Padma bridge from the share market, three days after the government withdrew its request for a World Bank loan.
"The stockmarket can be a major partner in the financing of the project if the government plans to use own fund," DSE President Rakibur Rahman said yesterday at a press briefing.
He said the government expenditure would increase due to interest payment if it collected funds from banking or other sectors. And for this, the government will have to set aside an allocation in the budget, which will squeeze funds for other development activities, hurting the private sector.
The government should draw up a plan to implement the project, making sure that it would not have a negative impact on the overall economy, Rakibur said.
Through offloading its stakes in different companies and wooing non-resident Bangladeshis in the stockmarket, the government can raise at least half of the fund needed for the project implementation, the DSE president said.
"The DSE is ready not only to be part of the bridge implementation, but also a campaigner for the project," he added.
Meanwhile, an eight-member committee formed by DSE held its first meeting yesterday to discuss how to turn around the ailing stockmarket.
Following the meeting, the DSE president named the panel as "stockmarket coordination committee".
"We do not want to create any expectation about the market, we want a solution if there is a lack of coordination among market stakeholders such as regulators, banks, merchant banks, listed companies and insurance firms," said Rakibur, coordinator and spokesman of the committee.
The panel in its first meeting decided that each stakeholder would play a role from their positions.
"We will also go to Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission, Bangladesh Bank, National Board of Revenue, finance ministry and, if necessary, to the premier for the implementation of our recommendations," Rakibur said, adding the panel would sit once in a month on a regular basis and more than once if necessary.