The government's net borrowing from national savings instruments fell short by more than Tk19,915 crore, or 62.23%, of the target set to meet the budget deficit in the last fiscal year.
In 2021-22, the government had targeted to borrow Tk32,000 crore by selling savings certificates.
The government borrowed over Tk1.8 lakh crore from this sector in the 12 months up to June 2022 but repaid previous loans and interests to the tune of Tk88,155 crore.
The interest payment alone stood at Tk40,002 crore, according to the latest report of the Department of National Savings.
Sector insiders believe the investments have dropped drastically because of the new rules making income tax return certificates mandatory for investing more than Tk5 lakh and the provision of jail and fines for having investments in savings certificate schemes outside the declarations.
In June, the last month of the outgoing fiscal year, the sale of savings certificates stood at over Tk10,711 crore when Tk8,962 crore was repaid as principal amount and interest.
More than Tk3,980 crore of the amount was paid to the savings certificate holders as interest. As a result, the net sales in June stood at a little over Tk1,789 crore.
Despite the dwindling sales of savings instruments, the government has set a target to borrow Tk35,000 crore from the sector in the current fiscal year.
In line with a gazette recently issued by the government, the central bank has instructed banks to take necessary measures to properly comply with related provisions of the Finance Act 2022 which require an investor to provide proof of their income tax return filing for the latest year to buy savings tools of more than Tk5 lakh.
In the fiscal 2020-21, the government borrowed Tk42,000 crore by selling savings instruments, which was Tk14,428 crore in the previous fiscal year.
The amount was Tk49,393 crore in the fiscal 2018-19, Tk46,530 crore in 2017-18, and Tk52,417 crore in 2016-17, according to the data available with the Department of National Savings.
Recently, the Bangladesh Bank has issued a nine-point instruction to ensure that customers do not suffer during the sale of savings certificates. Moreover, only institutional investors are exempted from filing income tax returns.