BB pledges to reach the unbanked The central bank to adopt a 'people-centric' model
The Bangladesh Bank will adopt a “people-centric” growth and empowerment model to provide economically deprived people with financial services to ensure overall economic development, Governor Atiur Rahman said yesterday.
The central bank will do the job under its Bangladesh Bank financial inclusion initiatives with the thematic outline “Including Excluded People”.
The initiatives were presented at the inaugural session of the national consultations in preparation for the international conference on people's empowerment model, organised by the foreign ministry, in the capital.
Rahman defined the financially excluded people as those who are dwelling in remote, sparsely populated locations and deprived of financial and social services and the financially excluded institutions are those micro and small scale farm and non-farm organisations which are excluded from financial services.
As an example of an initiative, for the first time, savings accounts of more than 9.6 million farmers have been opened -- each with a deposit of Tk 10 only -- and are being used for government transfers such as diesel subsidy.
Until June 10, Bangladesh Bank has provided Tk 490 crore to BRAC's refinancing scheme with which the development organisation provided loans to 4.15 lakh sharecroppers in 250 upazilas of 48 districts.
Asked how effectively the initiative is being implemented, the BB chief told The Daily Star: “I personally call farmers' mobiles randomly to find out whether they received the money.”
Under the BB's directive, student loans are also given out to poor students living on the outskirts of the city, which Rahman described as a “high-return investment”.
When the people living on the outskirts are brought under the initiative, every worker working in the capital will be able to send money with their mobile phones to their remote village in Kurigram also, he said.
The Daily Star/Bangladesh/ 14th June 2012