Foreign Aid Needs Better Scrutiny
Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Foreign loan should be received in such a way so that no harm is caused to the country, economist Qazi Kholiquzzaman has said.

He made the comment on Monday while speaking at a discussion at the auditorium of Centre for Integrated Rural Development for Asia and the Pacific at Topkhana Road in the city.

Non-government organisation Aid Accountability Group organised the discussion on foreign aid in light of joint aid strategy.

Palli Karma Sohayak Foundation (PKSF) chairman Kholiquzzaman said, "We have to formulate our own plans for the country's development and we can take loan from abroad if there is a need."

"But, it should not be taken if it harms the country's interest."

He said the country must raise its revenue income in order to sustain its economy, which now contributes a paltry 11 percent to the total national income.

Whereas, he said, Nepal's revenue income is 14 percent. "If they can achieve that, why can't we?"

He called on the government to take effective steps to increase revenue income by one or two percent.

He pointed out the flaws in the education policy, which are impeding the country's progress.

"The importance of education lies in creating skilled manpower and so the government will have to remove disparities in education."

Former economic advisor ABM Mirza Azizul Islam said, "We should have transparency when we do any work with foreign loan."

Pointing to the statement of a participant who spoke at the discussion, he said, "The Adamjee Jute Mill has been shut down due to corruption. It didn't close down upon the IMF and World Bank's suggestions."

"The loan that is taken from the IMF and World Bank in the name of development is misused."

He also opined that the loan taken in the name of poverty reduction is often misused by the vested interest group at the cost of the poor people.

He mentioned that there are many economists in the country, who work for formulation of the World Bank, saying, " If they work on the World Bank suggestions, how can the country flourish?"

Source: bdnews24.com

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