The Bangladesh Association of Bankers (BAB) has said it is not possible to implement a new pay structure set by the Bangladesh Bank for officers and employees at private banks from 1 March this year.
"We have urged the central bank to extend the deadline for the implementation of salaries and allowances and review the pay structure," said BAB Chairman Md Nazrul Islam Mazumder.
He was speaking to journalists after a meeting with Bangladesh Bank Governor Fazle Kabir where high officials of the central bank and chairmen of different banks and BAB leaders were present.
Md Nazrul Islam Mazumder also mentioned that there was ambiguity in the central bank circular but he did not elaborate on it.
He said the Bangladesh Bank in the meeting assured the BAB that it will take the matter seriously.
"We have informed the governor how much banks, society and low paid employees will benefit from the central bank circular. In the circular, there are some misunderstandings, which need to be fixed," said Mazumder, also chairman of Exim Bank.
"We want to implement the circular. We will try to do it in such a way so that there is no sudden load on banks," he added.
Asked about ambiguities in the circular, the BAB president said it lacks specific directions on increasing salaries and promotions.
"I think the Bangladesh Bank may call us again after discussing these issues themselves. They will also discuss it with us," he said.
Bangladesh Bank spokesperson and Executive Director Md Sirajul Islam said the BAB has requested for extension of the time limit for the implementation of minimum wage. The central bank said it would review the matter.
He added the BAB and the Association of Bankers, Bangladesh (ABB) had recently met the governors regarding the central bank's circular on salary and allowances.
"When they claimed that there was ambiguity in various aspects of the circular, we gave an explanation on behalf of the Bangladesh Bank and described its background. After receiving the reply from the central bank, bank owners agreed in most cases," said Md Sirajul Islam.
Earlier on 20 January, the Bangladesh Bank fixed a minimum wage of Tk39,000 for private bank officials subject to the completion of their probation period.
The central bank issued a notice in this regard which will come into effect from next March.
It also stated that no banker can be fired if they do not achieve the target set by the bank or on the pretext of incompetence.
According to the notification, the minimum monthly wage for trainee assistant officers (general and cash) will be Tk28,000 during their probation period.
Also, office assistants, including security guards, cleaners, and messengers, will get Tk24,000 as the minimum wage.