Agriculture minister Mohammad Abdur Razzaque on Sunday said that congenial atmosphere should be created for the young small entrepreneurs who would turn the agriculture into a profitable enterprise.
‘Small entrepreneurs scattered at the remote places in the country are contributing immensely to the economy. They are the backbone of the economy,’ he said.
The minister made the remarks while speaking at the award giving ceremony of the 14th Citi Microentrepreneurship Awards in a city hotel, according to a press release issued by the agriculture ministry.
Speaking as the chief guest, he said that if entrepreneurs were created, investment would be increased and they would leave positive impact on the economy.
He said that technical assistances were required to facilitate the entrepreneurs to preserve process and market their produces.
Razzaque also said that the rate of interest for small and medium enterprises would have to be reduced.
‘This labour intensive sector is able to create employment and increase national income,’ he said, adding that this sector could be able to empower women, ensure equality of income between men and women and eliminate hunger and poverty.
In five categories, nine persons and three organisations were awarded crest, certificate and cash money for their contribution to the economy.
Imdadul Haque, an entrepreneur from Katakhali, Rashahi, received Tk 4.5 lakh in prize money as the winner of the ‘Best Microentrepreneur of the Year’.
Khairul Alam of Satkhira and Mohammad Abdus Salam of Narayanganj got Tk 1.50 lakh and Tk 1 lakh respectively as they bagged second and third prize in the category.
Marium Akter of Bandar received the ‘Best Woman Microentrepreneur of the Year award with Tk 3.5 lakh in prize money while Nur-Jahan of Chattogram and Anjona Begum of Jamalpur became first runner up with Tk 1.5 lakh and second runner up with Tk 1 lakh respectively.
To encourage youth entrepreneurs, three individuals were awarded at the 14th session of the CMA awards.
The recipients were Rezoanul Islam of Bogra, Mansura of Pirojpur and Mohammad Akbar Hossain of Chattogram. Rezoanul, Mansura and Akbar got first, second and third prize with Tk 3.5 lakh, Tk 1.5 lakh and Tk 1 lakh in prize money respectively.
Mokaddesur Rahman of Cox’s Bazar, Salim Reza of Natore and Salma Khatun of Satkhira received first, second and third prize respectively in best microfinance entrepreneurs in the agriculture category.
National Development Program (NDP), a microfinance organisation based in Sirajganj, was awarded the ‘innovative microfinance institution of the year’ for their yearlong activity in the region.
Dinajpur-based organisation Gram Bikash Kendra (GBK) and Dhaka-based Coastal Association for Social Transformation Trust received the ‘innovative microfinance institution of the year’ for their innovative strategies of supporting rural people’s development.
Acting 14th CMA Advisory Committee chairperson Rokia Afzal Rahman, Citi Bangladesh managing director and country officer N Rajashekaran, Shakti Foundation founder and executive director Humaira Islam and Credit and Development Forum executive director Abdul Awal were present, among others, at the event.
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