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Dhaka Tribune

BB for emergency fund to support housing loan defaulters

Update : 01 Nov 2015, 07:04 PM

Bangladesh Bank Governor Atiur Rahman urged the government to create an emergency fund to support poor defaulters under the Housing Fund Project.

The poor underprivileged defaulters should be taken into consideration if they fail to pay instalment, he said.

Atiur was addressing a workshop titled “Housing fund to alleviate housing problem of underprivileged people”.

The Housing Fund of Bangladesh Government held the workshop which was held yesterday at the Bangladesh Bank Training Academy (BBTA) in the capital.

Abul Kalam Azad, principal secretary to the Prime Minister’s Office, attended the event as the chief guest while M Aslam Alam, secretary to the Bank and Financial Institutions Division, as special guest with the central bank governor as the chaired.

Chief Executives of different NGOs working with the housing fund to provide loans for people in the grass roots level were present at the workshop.

The governor called upon the poor not to turn defaulter but to create an example by paying hundred percent of their loans while the rich tend to expose themselves as defaulters.

He advised the steering committee of the housing fund to take up a policy measure to recover loan through taking support of local administration.

The NGO executives upheld to the steering committee different problems they face in managing and getting housing loan from the government.

They demanded reducing interest rate, increasing the existing ceiling of Tk50,000 and making an easy process to get loan.

The NGO officials also proposed attaching two more products -- “Bondhu Chula” – an environment friendly burner, and a solar panel, to the loan.

In his address, Abul Kalam Azad said the two proposals will be taken under consideration.

A committee will be formed to make a way out for the defaulters, analysing their problems, he added. 

He also revealed that a website will be launched by next one month to provide update information on housing fund.

Aslam Alam identified inefficiency in fund management and lack of foresight in selecting clients by NGOs as major causes for becoming defaulter.

He emphasised the need for some policy changes to managing housing fund.

The government has allocated a total of Tk298 crore for the housing fund project from 1997-98 fiscal year, of which Tk160.50 crore has been already released.

The fund size now stands at Tk348 crore and a total of 514 private organisations are working with the loan activities. 

According to the Bangladesh Bank data, a total of Tk207 crore loan has been disbursed among the beneficiaries till September 2015, of which above 41% remains unrealised.

A number of 63,220 houses have been constructed with the help of disbursed loans as of September 2015. 

The net income of the fund was Tk21.42 crore in the fiscal year 2014-15. 

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