BB pushes rural service at ATM launch | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, September 26, 2010 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, September 26, 2010

BB pushes rural service at ATM launch

Atiur Rahman, centre, governor of Bangladesh Bank, attends the launch of co-branded ATM booths by Rupali and BRAC banks, at The Westin Dhaka yesterday. Muhammad A (Rumee) Ali, chairman, Syed Mahbubur Rahman, managing director of BRAC Bank, and Ahmed Al-Kabir, chairman, Farid Uddin managing director of Rupali Bank, were also present. Photo: BRAC BANK

Bangladesh Bank (BB) Governor Atiur Rahman in Dhaka yesterday asked commercial banks to serve rural areas better, adding that he was eager to permit more rural bank branches.
“I am willing to permit a rural branch with just two employees equipped with technology,” Rahman told a gathering at the Westin Dhaka hotel on the launch of co-branded ATM (automated teller machine) booths by state-owned Rupali and the private BRAC Bank. “It may be called a mini-branch,” he said.
The governor ordered the banking industry to reach out to rural people -- with each having to give specific targets for expanding farm credit in the last two years.
Roughly 90 lakh farmers have already opened state-owned bank accounts with fee of just Tk 10 ($0.14) in order to get subsidies.
The central bank chief asked state banks to offer loans to spice cultivators at 2 percent, with the BB paying the banks the difference from a normal loan rate.
Chairman of BRAC Bank, Muhammad A (Rumee) Ali, Chairman of Rupali Bank Ahmed Al-Kabir, BRAC Bank Managing Director Syed Mahbubur Rahman and Rupali Bank Managing Director Farid Uddin Ahmed spoke on the occasion.
BRAC Bank will install 50 ATM booths at various Rupali Bank locations, and will also issue 2 lakh ATM cards without any issuance fee for Rupali. The deal will allow Rupali Bank customers to use more than 200 ATMs of BRAC Bank and its Omnibus ATM Network of about 700 ATMs.
The BB governor said this sets an example for partnerships between public and private banks, and helps customers to get better service in a cost-effective way.
Muhammad A (Rumee) Ali said it is essential to modernise public sector banks with technology-based services.

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