Proper use of PM’s stimulus package for agriculture stressed

Photo: Collected

Branch managers of Rajshahi Krishi Unnayan Bank (RAKUB) were asked to perform their duties with utmost sincerity and honesty for the best uses of the Prime Minister’s stimulus package fund for agriculture in the country’s northwest region.

The instruction was given in a meeting of evaluating progress of disbursing loan from the stimulus package fund held at RAKUB’s training institute here Tuesday.

A total of 26 branch managers in Rajshahi zone joined their respective performance evaluation meeting.

Managing Director AKM Sajedur Rahman Khan addressed the meeting as focal person highlighting the importance of the package to recoup the losses being caused by the novel coronavirus (Covid-19).

He urged the managers to put in their level best efforts to attain the hundred percent target of disbursing loan from the package fund within the stipulated time as the hierarchies of the bank has intensified surveillance on the issue.

Utmost importance should be given on how to disburse the loan among the genuine affected farmers so that they can derive total benefits of the stimulus package fund, he added.

Deputy Managing Director Muhammad Idrish, General Manager Ruhul Amin, Zonal Manager Hasanul Islam and Assistant General Manager Shawkat Shahidul Islam also spoke.

The meeting was told that the RAKUB has disbursed Taka 47.78 crore loans from the Prime Minister’s stimulus package fund till June last.

“We have disbursed the loan among 5,421 farmers through our different branches in all 16 districts of Rajshahi and Rangpur divisions,” said Sajedur Rahman Khan, adding that the government has allocated funds worth Taka 319 crore from the stimulus package.

He said Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has announced a new stimulus package of Tk 5,000 crore in May last for farmers to boost agricultural production in the backdrop of the Covid-19 fallout.

Sajedur Khan said the money from the fund is being disbursed among small and medium-scale farmers, including those in the poultry and dairy sector, in rural areas, at five percent interest.

“Small and medium-scale farmers in rural areas are getting loans from the fund, and they are using the money to produce agricultural products, flowers, fruits, fish and poultry,” he added.

Besides, the existing disbursement of loans at four percent interest for spices is continuing.

He also said the stimulus package will ultimately contribute a lot towards recouping the losses being triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic.

In addition to the stimulus package fund, the specialized commercial bank has set a target of disbursing loans worth Taka 2,850 crore, recovering Taka 2,300 crore and deposit collection of Taka 1,200 crore during the current 2020-2021 fiscal year.

Target has been set to disburse Tk 950cr for crop, Tk 750cr for SME, Tk 700cr for running agriculture, Tk 50cr for fisheries, Tk 100cr for livestock, Tk 40cr for poverty reduction, Tk 35cr for agro-based industries and Tk 10 crore for farm machineries.

:BSS