Thursday, 29 September, 2022

Fish Farming

RAKUB disburses Tk 143cr loan in northwestern dists

RAJSHAHI: Rajshahi Krishi Unnayan Bank (RAKUB) has disbursed loans of around Taka 143 crore for fish farming in the country’s northwest districts during the last 2021-2022 financial year.

The state-owned specialised bank distributed the loan among 2,250 commercial fish farmers in all 16 districts under Rajshahi and Rangpur divisions aimed at boosting fish production.

RAKUB Managing Director (MD) Zahidul Haque said many of the farmers have availed the opportunities of recouping their losses caused by the adverse impact of corona pandemic after taking advantage of the loan facilities, reports BSS.

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.

He said they have set targets of disbursing loans of Taka 150 crore for the fisheries sector during the current 2022-2023 fiscal year.

“I have received a loan of Taka 35 lakh around four to five months back and revived my business at present,” said Sultan Mahmud, a fish farmer in Raninagar area of Rajshahi city.

He started his business in 25 bigha of water bodies with initial investment of Taka eight lakh around 12 years back and gained success with formation of a running capital of around Taka one crore.

But his business was affected badly by the pandemic, he said.

Sultan said a special credit program for boosting fish production of RAKUB has contributed a lot towards popularizing the commercial fish farming process everywhere in the country’s northwest region.

The bank has operated the programme styled “RAKUB fisheries village” for extensive fish cultivation to create employment opportunities along with fulfilling protein deficiency in the region.

The main objective of the programme was to encourage small farmers in fish farming so that they could produce more fish in the small ponds and other water-bodies using modern and scientific technologies instead of traditional ones.

The programme gives emphasis on forming fisheries villages with at least 10-12 small ponds and other water bodies at potential places.

RAKUB MD Zahidul Haque said there is a bright prospect for increasing fish production in all the northern districts with optimum use of the existing natural resources.

Taking advantage of the situation, he said the bank has selected the fisheries sector on priority basis supplementing the government’s efforts to bolster both rural and urban economy.

At the preliminary stage, the RAKUB MD said most of the upazilas and union-level branches in 16 districts have been disbursing the special loan successfully.

Requisite funds have been disbursed among the interested fish farmers during the period.

The bank has established an easy process for extending necessary credits to small and medium fish cultivators so that they can contribute to the economic growth of the country side by side with taking the region from the curse of poverty.

In addition to raising skilled fish farmers, the scheme helps increase fish cultivation through providing them with special facilities, the RAKUB Chief added.

Headquartered in Rajshahi, the bank has achieved a significant success in making the region surplus with food through quality consumer services.

In the first phase, cultivation of various species of fish, especially pungus, carp, monosex tilapia and thai koi, has been selected for investment.

The programme has a provision of sanctioning loans up to Taka five lakh in different potential and prospective fields.

The farmers having experience of fish farming and at least a four-week training programme on improved fish cultivation would be given preference to get the loan.

Shahidul Islam said the programme is ensuring easy credit facilities to the small fish farmers as a vital force for poverty alleviation and national economic growth.