Cooperatives can eradicate rural poverty: PM

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today said there will be no poverty in Bangladesh if multidimensional rural cooperatives can be established.

“It’s proven…if we can build multidimensional rural cooperatives, there’ll be no poverty in Bangladesh. Poverty will totally be eradicated,” she said.

Sheikh Hasina said this while addressing a function marking the 49th National Cooperative Day and awarding the recipient of the National Cooperative Award at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC).  She attended the programme virtually from her official residence Gono Bhaban.

The theme of the day this year is: ‘Philosophy of Bangabandhu, Development in Cooperatives’.

Hasina said those involved in the cooperative movement have a bigger role to play in freeing the country from poverty.

“You’ll have to continue your work in that direction. What we want is to free Bangladesh from hunger and poverty,” she said.

She asked those involved in the cooperative movement to develop a marketing system to sell their products and produce. “If we don’t develop a marketing system, then we won’t be able to sell our products and it’ll discourage all…so, marketing is very important.”

Stating that the government believes in the policy of the Father of the Nation, the Prime Minister noted that the country can be developed through cooperatives.

She asked all concerned to discharge their duties with sincerity and responsibility.  “Don’t go for immediate profit, let it (cooperatives) be a permanent, pro-productive and profitable organisation so that all members could get the shares of their profits.”

Hasina also laid emphasis on involving more women in the cooperative movement, saying that half of the country’s population is women and they should be involved in this programme in a greater way.

Hasina said cooperatives are the tool for fulfilling the dream of the Father of the Nation. “Bangabandhu wanted to expand cooperative-based production and distribution management in all sectors.”

State Minister for LGRD and Cooperatives Swapan Bhattacharjee and Rural Development and Cooperatives Division Secretary Md Rezaul Ahsan also spoke at the event.

Earlier, LGRD and Cooperatives Minister Md Tazul Islam, on behalf of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, handed over the National Cooperative Award to cooperative societies and individuals in different categories in recognition of their contributions to the sector.

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