Companies in Bangladesh that are hiring transgender people will be given tax breaks. This was announced by finance minister A.H.M. Mustafa Kamal as the latest in a series of measures to boost support for the minority group in the Muslim-majority nation.
Firms would be given a 5% tax cut, or be reimbursed with 75% of the salaries of transgender people, if they hire 100 workers or 10% of their workforce from the community.
According to Kamal, the proposal to enact special tax incentives eyed to “provid(e) employment and ensur(e) a rise in living standards and social and economic integration of the members of the third gender.”
It is estimated that 1.5 million transgender people live in Bangladesh, many of them still facing discrimination that forced them to live by begging, working in the sex industry, or get involved in criminal activities.
Bangladesh also still has a colonial-era law that punishes gay sex with prison.
In 2013, nonetheless, transgender people may choose to be identified as a separate gender; while in 2018, they were allowed to register to vote as a third gender.