RAJSHAHI: Rajshahi Krishi Unnayan Bank (RAKUB) has been playing an effective role in recouping the existing losses being caused by the novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) in the country’s northwest region.
The specialised commercial bank has been providing loans to the affected people in agriculture and other sectors so that they can get back to their normal life after the best uses of their borrowed money.The bank management revealed this while addressing a daylong review and evaluation related monthly business meeting held at its board room on Monday.
Chairman of the bank’s board of directors Roisul Alam Mondal addressed the meeting as chief guest virtually with Managing Director-in-Charge Muhammad Idrish in the chair. General Managers Ruhul Amin and Kamil Burhan Ferdous also spoke.
Through its 383 branches at present, RAKUB has been operating its activities as the largest development partner in all the 16 northwest districts of Rajshahi and Rangpur divisions targeting the agriculture sector and all its sub-sectors.
As the largest development partner in agriculture as well as agro-based industry sector of the northwest Bangladesh, currently, the bank has adopted the effective work plan which is being implemented at the grassroots level to attain all the targets within the stipulated time.
The meeting was told that the bank has set a target of disbursing agricultural loans worth Taka 2,850 crore in the country’s northwest (NW) region during the current 2020-2021 fiscal year to facilitate increasing crop production and enhance rural economy.
Target has also been set to recover loans of Taka 2,300 crore including classified loans worth Taka 785.23 crore and raise deposit collection to Taka 1,200 crore.Muhammad Idrish said 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 during the current fiscal.
The state-owned RAKUB has disbursed Taka 401 crore agriculture loans among 8,806 farmers through different branches from the Prime Minister’s stimulus package fund to boost agricultural production in the backdrop of the Covid-19. Bangladesh Bank has allocated Taka 416 crore fund from the stimulus package.
Muhammad Idrish said the money from the fund has been 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 received loans from the fund, and they are using the money to yield agricultural products, flowers, fruits, fish and poultry,” he added. Other than, the bank has disbursed Taka 47.40 crore loans among 1,328 entrepreneurs to revive cottage, micro, small and medium enterprises (CMSMEs) that have been affected financially due to the Covid-19 outbreak. Bangladesh Bank has allocated Taka 50 crore to RAKUB for the sector.
Besides, the existing disbursement of loans at four percent interest for spices is continuing and Taka 212 crore has, so far, been disbursed among 25,550 farmers, he said.
He also said loan disbursement activities to other sectors of the stimulus package announced by the premier are progressing efficiently. “We are very much hopeful about attaining the cherished targets in these sectors within the stipulated time,” he added.
He also said the stimulus packages will ultimately contribute a lot towards recouping the losses being triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic.