Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN)– Bangladesh Bank (BB) Governor Dr Atiur Rahman has advised the bankers to move forward with financial supports to help developing new entrepreneurs across the country.

“You (bankers) have to extend your supports to the new entrepreneurs aiming to create employment opportunities through establishing their business entities,” BB Governor Dr Rahman said.
The BB chief was addressing a Financial Literacy Campaign on Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) at Abdul Karim Sahitya Bisharad Hall on Bangla Academy ground in Dhaka on Wednesday as part of the ongoing banking fair.

The central bank of Bangladesh organised the five-day long Banking Fair Bangladesh 2015 aiming to build a banking nation through expediting the ongoing financial initiative across the country.

The fair has been going on from November 24.

The BB governor also asked the banks and non-banking financial institutions (NBFIs) to expedite the implementation of ongoing financial inclusion programmes across the country by strengthening financing in SME sector specially for women entrepreneurs.

The banks and NBFIs have already disbursed loans to around 6,000 women entrepreneurs across the country in line with the BB’s advices, the governor highlighted.

The central bank earlier asked all banks and NBFIs to provide minimum BDT 50,000 as loan from their each braches to at least a woman entrepreneur by the end of this year.

Currently, 56 scheduled banks and 31 NBFIs are running their businesses with more than 9,000 branches across the country.

“We’re planning that the banks and NBFIs will have to provide the same amount of loan to at least two women entrepreneurs instead of the existing one from the next year,” Dr Rahman disclosed.

He hoped that with the initiative, the small women entrepreneurs will turned into meddle ones gradually.

“We’ve not only created separate unit managed by women officials for women entrepreneurship development but also has directed all banks and NBFIs to have similar units,” he noted.

As a result, thousands of women entrepreneurs are having access to finance in different clusters, the governor explained.

Besides, the central bank of Bangladesh has taken special policy measures and opened refinance windows to facilitate women empowerment in various sectors.

Describing various initiatives, taken by the BB, in the last six years, Dr Rahman said: “We want women empowerment for achieving balanced and gender friendly economic growth in Bangladesh.”

SK Sur Chowdhury, deputy governor of BB, advised the bankers to go for SME entrepreneurs instead of large ones for minimising their risks.

“The banks will have to go door-to-door for creating new entrepreneurs across the country,” the deputy governor explained.

Among others, Executive Director of BB Nirmal Chandra Bhakta, Vice Chairman of the Association of Bankers, Bangladesh (ABB) Mohammad Abdul Mannan, Chairman of the Bangladesh Leasing and Finance Companies Association (BLFCA) Asad Khan and successful women entrepreneurs from different areas of Bangladesh also spoke on the occasion.

BBN/SSR/AD