‘Strive to battle poverty’

Himalayan News Service

Kathmandu, April 30:

Radha Krishna Mainali, minister for education and sports, while inaugurating the first annual general meeting of National Cooperative Bank Ltd (NCBL), said cooperatives should become a medium for socio-economic development of the poor and low-income community. Mainali said the bank should play a catalytic role in providing financial and technical support to small cooperatives. “The bank could be an effective tool to consolidate the scattered cooperatives and mobilise them for rural poverty alleviation,” he added. He also urged the bank to be proactive, especially at rural areas, as most of them lack of proper management system and human resources. “Since NCBL is an apex body of the cooperatives, it should provide support,” he added.

Bishow Bandhu Thapa, chairman of National Cooperatives Development Board, said that the bank should reach rural and underdeveloped parts of the country through community based cooperatives. He asked the government’s support in extending cooperative movement to the rural areas, where banking services are rare or being displaced due to insurgency. Prof Dr Bishwanbhar Paykurel, a noted economist and advisor of the bank, also said the bank’s target group and areas should be ‘low-income people of remote areas’. Stating the fact that cooperative movement is a spontaneous socio-economic development movement of low-income group, he said the bank’s activities should also benefit them. “The bank should have a long-term vision, which should be guided by sound policies, while it should also promote fundamental values and norms of cooperatives,” he added. Rajesh Hari Joshi, chairman of NCBL, said that the bank has been providing both the financial and technical support to small

cooperatives, which have been effective in promoting cooperative movement.