Prolonged political unrest to slow growth: economist

Development will slow down if political instability continues for long, economist Akbar Ali Khan said yesterday.

“Widespread political instability ruins economic growth. The political debate may continue among the parties, but all should work together for the sake of the economy.”

The former caretaker government adviser spoke as a guest at a debate competition on the importance of microcredit for the rural economy, organised by the Debate for Democracy, a debate organiser, at Film Development Corporation in the capital.

Micro lenders proved that loans can be distributed among the poor without collateral, he said. “This idea is becoming popular globally.”

The government has distributed thousands of crores of taka as loans, but did not get any benefit from those, he said.

But microcredit proved its strength to reduce poverty and is one of the ways to develop the country, he said. Some people often criticise microcredit without having adequate knowledge of it, Khan said.

“The country is going through some problems; we should develop different types of strategies to solve these problems.”

The economy needs a good environment to get the highest benefits of the microcredit system, Khan said.

Debate for Democracy Chairman Hassan Ahmed Chowdhury Kiron conducted the debate between teams from Dhaka International University (DIU) and Green University of Bangladesh.

DIU beat Green University and moved to semi final of the debate competition yesterday where students from 18 universities took part.