South Korea wants to help BD in rural development
06 March 2016, Nirapad News: South Korea interested to provide both financial and technical support to Bangladesh for rural development, according to a senior official of the East Asian country’s government.
“My two staff already visited the northern and southern parts of Bangladesh to select suitable areas to implement rural development projects,” Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Korea Rural Community Corporation (KRC) Dr Sang Mu Lee said on the sideline of a conference in the capital on Saturday.
The rural development projects would not be big ones (within US$ 25 million) he said, adding that Korea will first take a develop project on pilot basis to take experience from the ground before going scaling up to implement a bigger rural development project in a country with such a distinct culture and ecosystem like Bangladesh.
Pollibir Unnayan Sangstha, Thakurgaon, in collaboration with KRC organised the meeting on ‘Comparative analysis of South Korea and Bangladesh rural development experiences’ at BRAC Center for Development Management (BRAC-CDM), Savar.
Dr LEE said Saturday’s meeting is discussing how rural development projects will be formulated considering Bangladesh’s perspectives and Korean rural development experiences.
“After the meeting, a project proposal will be submitted to the KRC soon. I hope this project will be operational by 2018,” he said, adding that the KRC will provide funds to Bangladesh as official development assistance.
Dr LEE said the KRC will provide support to develop rural agriculture, agro-based firms, infrastructure and education – whatever is needed for rural development of the country.
Speaking at the meeting, the KRC CEO said according to the World Bank, growth in agriculture of Bangladesh is shown to be at least twice as effective as growth in other sectors in reducing poverty and hunger. “I believe that agriculture and rural development are visible options for sustainable development.”
Observing that there is scope to adapt Korean rural development projects in Bangladesh, he said KRC is a specialised agency with abundant on-the-ground experience of Korean rural development.
Making his presentation on experiences of Korea’s rural development, Dr Jung-Joo Kim said Korea has been working on rural development since 1950. Giving the Korean examples, he said Bangladesh should train village leaders, and discipline people with simple projects first and advance to income-boosting projects for its rural development.
Member of Planning Commission (GED) Shamsul Alam, research director of Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies (BIDS) Dr Kazi Toufique and director of Centre for Climate Change and Environmental Research at BRAC University AS Moniruzzaman, among others, spoke at the conference,