Table of Contents

Bangladesh

Table of Contents

Currency

Bangladeshi Taka (BDT)

Payroll Frequency

Semi-Monthly / Monthly

Employer Taxes

5%

About Bangladesh

Bangladesh is a South Asian country marked by its beautiful natural resources. The Meghna and Jamuna rivers provide fertile plains while the Sundarban mangrove forest on the eastern side is a critical part of its ecology and also, home to the Royal Bengal tiger. The country is ethnically homogeneous with Bengalis making up 98% of its population. Islam is the main religion, accounting for 87% of the population, with Hindus and Buddhists as significant minorities. Generally, the country is identified by the folk tradition of the Bengali culture.

In 2018, Bangladesh’s per-capita income was $4,561 (PPP) and $1,754 (nominal), making it one of the poorest countries in the world. Agriculture is the main economic activity, and the increase in irrigation networks have enhanced the production of rice, maize, and jute as the main cash crops. The manufacturing industry, specifically the ready-made garment industry, has grown by double digits, providing employment to many citizens. The country’s apparel exports in 2009 stood at 2.66 billion, overtaking neighboring India at 2.27 billion.

Employment Relationship

• Permanent Employment

In Bangladesh, a permanent employee is defined as someone who is employed in an establishment on a permanent basis or has completed their probationary period in the establishment. Permanent employment contracts can be terminated by giving a notice of 120 days as opposed to other types of employment contracts where 60 days' notice is required. Permanent employees can terminate their contract by resignation with a 30 days notice. They are also entitled to severance pay upon termination of their contract. In any organization where at least 25 permanent employees are employed, the employer must  introduce group insurance for employees. Permanent employees must also be paid festival bonus in the amount of two months' wages.     

• Fixed-Term or Specific-Purpose Contracts

In Bangladesh, a worker may be called a substitute, casual, or seasonal worker depending on the nature of their employment. A substitute worker is employed to fill the post of a permanent worker or a probationer during their absence. A casual worker is employed under a special arrangement or contract. A seasonal worker is hired for seasonal works and only remains to be employed until the season ends. The Labor Act does not limit either the maximum length of a fixed-term contract or the number of renewals. Temporary employees who have worked for more than one year in the same organization are considered permanent.

• Temporary Employment Contratcs

In Bangladesh, a temporary employee is any person employed in an establishment for work performed within a limited period. One of an employer's obligations is to supply tickets or cards for inspection to all workers in his establishment, including those employed under temporary contracts. A temporary employee shall be given a temporary ticket which shall be surrendered upon termination or getting permanent employment. Temporary employees can terminate their contracts by giving a 15 days' notice in writing. Temporary employees who have worked for more than 1 year in the same organization are considered permanent. Temporary employees hired from third-party employers must be compensated the same as employees hired directly by the employer.  Temporary employment agencies must open accounts in an approved bank in the name of "Worker's Social Security Fund" within 6 months of obtaining a license. The agency must contribute 15% of the monthly base salary to the account for each employee. 

Probationary Period

The maximum probationary period in Bangladesh is 6 months for clerical workers and 3 months for all others. If the quality of work has not been determined during the probationary period, it may be extended for another 3 months. Once probationary period is over, an employee is deemed permanent whether they have been issued a confirmation letter or not, unless advised otherwise.

Working Hours

Employees may not be required or allowed to work in an establishment for more than 8 hours per day on a regular basis (occasionally, they may work up to 10 hours a day). Standard weekly working hours may not exceed 48 hours. The total hours of work (that includes overtime) cannot go over 60 hours in any week and, on average, 56 hours per week in a year.

Holidays / PTO

• Statutory Holidays

Employees are generally entitled to 11 days of festival holidays (determined by employer) with pay. If required to work on a holiday, employees may receive two compensatory paid and one substitute holiday. Major holidays for include: Shaheed Day and International Mother Language Day – February 21 Independence and National Day – March 26 Bengali New Year’s Day – April 14 May Day – May 1 Buddha Purnima (Boishakhi Purnima) – date subject to change every year Shab-e-Qadar – date subject to change every year Eid-ul-Fitr (3 days' leave) – dates subject to change every year Eid-ul-Azha (3 days' leave) – dates subject to change every year National Mourning Day – August 15 Krishna Janamashtami – date subject to change every year Moharrum (Ashura) – date subject to change every year Durga Puja (Bijoya Dashami) – date subject to change every year Eid-e-Miladun-Nabi – date subject to change every year Victory Day – December 16 Christmas Day – December 25 New Year's Eve – December 31

• Paid Annual Leave

The qualifying period for all employees' annual leave entitlement is 1 year of continuous service in an establishment with a minimum of 240 days of service within the previous 12 months. 1 day for every 18 days in a shop, commercial, industrial establishment, factory, or road transport 1 day for every 22 days on a tea plantation 1 day for every 11 days for newspaper workers Unused annual leave may be carried forward up to 40 days for most workers (60 days in some cases). If an employee plans to take four or more days of consecutive leave, they may be paid in advance. Other than annual leave, all employees, except those employed in a tea plantation, are entitled to 10 days' paid casual leave during a calendar year. This type of leave cannot be carried forward.

• Sick Leave

Private sector employees are entitled to annual paid sick leave of 14 days with a required medical certificate and no carry forward permitted. Public sector employees are entitled to a medical leave of up to 6 months with a medical certificate.

• Maternity Leave

Employees who have worked for at least 6 months (or under 6 months if unpaid) are entitled to 8 weeks of employer-paid maternity leave before the birth of a child and 8 weeks of paid leave after. Employers are prohibited from knowingly employing a woman, and women are also prohibited from working during the 8 weeks immediately following the delivery date. If an employee miscarries before the beginning of the maternity leave, the employee is entitled to 4 weeks of paid leave. Every female employee who has been in service under the same employer for at least 6 months is entitled to maternity benefits unless she has 2 or more surviving children at the time of her delivery. Leave for a third or subsequent child is unpaid. The maternity benefit shall be calculated by monthly earnings divided by 26.  The employer must pay the total cost of the maternity benefit, and the benefit must be paid for 8 weeks before and 8 weeks after childbirth. If the mother dies during childbirth or up to 8 weeks after childbirth, the benefit is paid to the person who cares for the child.

• Paternity Leave

New fathers may use the fully paid casual leave of 10 days in the absence of statutory paternity leave.

Termination of Employment

• Notice Period

In Bangladesh, an employer who wishes to dismiss a permanent employee must provide a notice in writing of: 120 days (for permanent employees) 60 days (for all other employees) Any employee who wishes to resign must give their employer notice in writing: 30 days for a permanent employee 15 days for temporary employee or any other employee If an employee wishes to leave work without notice, they must pay their employer an amount equal to the wages they earned for the period of notice.

• Severance Benefits

Severance pay is payable to an employee who has been continuously employed for at least 1 year in the event of a: Termination based on physical or mental incapacity or continued ill-health (referred to as 'discharge') Termination with notice without any reason. In both cases, severance pay amounts to 30 days' wages for each completed year of service or for any part thereof in excess of 6 months (limited to 25 years). Additionally, workers are entitled to 45 days' wages for each completed year above 10 completed years. In case an employee is dismissed for misconduct other than theft, misappropriation, fraud, embezzlement, breaking in the establishment, 'riot' or “disorderliness“, they are entitled to a severance pay of at least 15 days' wages for each completed year of service.