‘Expatriates have Vital Role in Sustainable Development Policy’

Bonn, 03 October 2015

The expatriates are part of the large human resources in the one world. They have to do significant contribution to the sustainable development in the home country and also in the host country. Speakers said it in a workshop on “Remittance for Community Development and Financial Literacy” held on Saturday in Bonn, Germany.

The workshop was a part of the Project titled, “Publications and Literacy Program on Development Policy for the Bangladeshi Expatriates”. BASUG with the support from the German development organisation Environment and Development North Rhine-Westphalia (SUE-NRW) is implementing this project.

BASUG Diaspora and Development e.V. (www.basug.eu), a Europe-based Diaspora organization has been working on important issues on migration and Development, proper utilization of remittance, gender and social compliances in Ready Made Garment sector.  It has been working in Bangladeshi communities in European countries including Germany, the Netherlands, UK, Italy and works also in Bangladesh and Sri Lanka as well for last few years.

On this occasion, Chief Guest of the workshop Ms Gabriele Klingmüller, Deputy Mayor of Bonn city launched the BASUG website in German version. This opened a new page and world for BASUG, which has so long the website in English language only. In his speech Founder Chairman of BASUG Mr Bikash Chowdhury Barua said, the German version of the Website will help us reach the mainstream German community members. The information that we shall put on our website will focus, mainly on positive aspects of migration and the contribution that the Diasporas/migrants contribute to the development not only of their countries of orgin, but also to the countries of destination.

The Deputy Mayor (Bürgermeisterin) of Bonn, Ms. Gabriele Klingmüller attended the program as chief guest, while Commercial Counsellor of Bangladesh Embassy in Germany, Mr. Dr Syed Masum Ahmed Choudhury addressed the session as special guest.  Project Consultant of Foundation Environment and Development North Rhine-Westphalia (SUE-NRW), Mr. Wilson Budde-Iser attended the program as guest of honour, while Mr Bikash Chowdhury Barua, Chairman, BASUG HQ, the Netherlands was in the chair. The research report on the existing practices and the financial literacy of the Bangladeshi expatriates living in NRW was presented by AHM Abdul Hai, Project Coordinator of BASUG Germany.

In the panel discussion, Dr. M. M. Islam, Senior Researcher, Bonn University and Secretary, BASUG e.V. Germany presented the key-note paper on “Migration and Remittances for Sustainable Development: Context of Bangladesh”, Mr Md Anowarul Kabir, President of German-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industries present paper on Socio-Economic Development of Bangladesh: Responsibilities and Challenges for NRBs and Dr. Corazon Dee, Senior Expert of PUM Netherlands and Chairperson of ERCMOVE/EPIC  discussed different aspects of remittance for development projects and financial literacy, while Dr Ahmed Ziauddin, President of BASUG e.V. moderated the session.

Speakers in the workshop stressed on enhancing the formal channel of remittances transfer; equipping remittance senders with adequate knowledge and skill on how to identify their financial position, define their financial goals, familiarise them with different financial products including productive investment opportunities in small and medium social enterprises back at home.

A documentary film made by BASUG on this issue was screened in the workshop which focussed on the concrete projects in sectors that could make a significant contribution to local development such as water purification, solar energy, building schools and colleges, cold storage, setting up fisheries, leather factories etc and stimulate local entrepreneurship including women, with the support of the Diasporas.

Different stakeholders including development and civil society organisations, policy makers and Bangladeshi migrant community members took part in the workshop.

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