Islamabad           -         Zarai Taraqiati Bank Limited (ZTBL) has outstanding loans of Rs10911.66 million against farmers of four provinces, AJK and GB in 2019, with the farmers in Punjab owes the largest share of more than 62 precent.

The Senate Functional Committee on Problems of Less Developed Areas which met with Senator Muhammad Usman Khan Kakar in chair was informed that in 2019, Zarai Taraqiati Bank Limited has written off around Rs26.65 million to farmers in four provinces, AJK and GB with farmers from Punjab share was around 63 percent.

The Senate Functional Committee on Problems of Less Developed Areas in its meeting was given a briefing on ZTBL loans granted, recovered, waived off, outstanding for all the less developed areas of the country. Details of all employees of ZTBL from less developed areas working on regular, contract, ad hoc and on deputation basis from were also provided.

The committee was informed that 70 percent or 33461 of 48253 farmers who received loans from ZTBL in 2019 were from Punjab. The committee was informed that for 2019, in Punjab 33461 borrowers were given Rs6166.373 million in Layyah, Loshran, Muzaffargarh, Rajanpur. It makes 10% of total Punjab disbursement. In Sindh 7144 borrowers were disbursed Rs2109.469 million in Badin, Dadu, Jaccobabad, Kamber & Shahdad Kot, Kashmore, Sanghar, Tharparkar, Umerkot. In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 3287 borrowers were given Rs746.336 million in Bannu, Battagram, Bunair, Chitral, DIKhan, Dir, Kohistan, Lakki Marwat, Shangla, Tank. In Balochistan 281 borrowers were given Rs86.98 million in Barkhan, Bolan, Jaffarabad, Kalat, Khuzdar, Kohlu, Lasbela. In Azad Jammu and Kashmir 2659 borrowers were disbursed Rs 3777.264 million in Bagh, Bhimber, Hattian, Haveli, Kotli, Mirpur, Muzaffarabad, Poonch, Sudhnoti. In Gilgit Baltistan 1421 borrowers were given Rs328.547 million in Astore, Diamer, Gilgit, Ghizer, Skardu.

The Committee observed that the comparative analysis can be carried out only when figures of loans for developed areas are also provided province wise and asked to submit the same in the next meeting.

Against the agricultural loans in Punjab Rs7977.6 million has been recovered, Rs16.72 written off, 6715.61 million is outstanding. In Sindh loans recovered are of 2268.14 million, written off Rs6.17 million and outstanding of Rs3069.67 million. In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Rs956.28 million has been recovered, Rs 1.91 million written off, Rs 220.98 million is outstanding. In Balochistan Rs129.48 million has been recovered and Rs 100.37 million is outstanding. In Azad Jammu and Kashmir Rs468.6 million has been recovered, Rs0.77 million written off, Rs163.57 million is outstanding. In Gilgit Baltistan Rs409.76 million has been recovered, Rs1.08 written off and Rs273.23 million is outstanding.

The Committee observed that small farmers shouldn’t be harshly treated and punished if they are unable to return loans due to some natural calamity or some other issue of resources.

The Committee was told that a total of 966 people from less developed areas are currently working in ZTBL out of which 236 are from Punjab, 213 from Sindh, 154 from KPK, 32 from ex-FATA, 185 from Balochistan, 76 from AJK and 70 are from GB. The meeting was attended among others by Senators Nighat Mirza, Sardar Shafiq Tareen, Haji Momin Khan Afridi, Moulvi Faiz Muhammad, Joint Secretary Finance and representatives from Zarai Taraqiati Bank Limited.