‘Addressing Extreme Poverty: Targeting is a key’

Monday, 30 April 2019
10:00 AM to 01:00 PM
Room#307, PKSF

Back in 1990, PKSF set its goal to create employment opportunities in the rural areas and targeted the moderate poor who had ability to upscale income generating activities immediately with credit and repay it. PKSF’s strategy was to create some breed of new institutions, who would dedicate themselves to deliver services to the poor and people lagged behind. It enabled PKSF to carry out continuous programmed interventions. From mid 90s, PKSF started targeting the ultra-poor people. Presently, more than 60 per cent of ultra-poor in Bangladesh are included in PKSF’s microfinance and other non-financial services.

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While delivering his welcome remarks to the academic seminar titled ‘Addressing Extreme Poverty: Targeting is a key’, PKSF’s Deputy Managing Director Mr Md Fazlul Kader also said, PKSF learned that in case of targeting the poor, a programme should choose institutions those have undiverted and single focus on reaching and serving the poor people. Secondly, the service should only be suitable for the poor. And management technology should be designed to elbow out the non-poor. Combining all of these management, institutional motif and product design, targeting should be a success. The primary objective of this seminar is to sharpen PKSF’s targeting efficiency, he expressed.


The seminar held on 30 April 2019 at PKSF was moderated by Dr Tapas Kumar Biswas, Director (Research), PKSF. He said, targeting is a necessary condition. If it fails, the expected results of development effort will be unreachable. It was the third in a series of four seminars between 29-30 April, where PKSF sought to incorporate the expert recommendations that will contribute to develop the M&E framework of PPEPP project.


The Keynote Speaker Dr S.M. Zulfiqar Ali, Senior Research Fellow, BIDS said, poverty is a multi-dimensional process of deprivation. It has many roots. The extreme poor experience poverty in its multiple deprivations manifested in social marginalization, lack of voice and power, and socio-economic insecurity. That’s why extreme poverty should be addressed separately. His presentation focused on current poverty situation, issues around extreme poverty, general issues around targeting, measurement of poverty and poverty-threshold analysis, lessons learned from targeting at SHIREE and implications for future programming.


Dr AKM Nuruzzaman, General Manager and Team Leader of UPP-Ujjibito said PKSF works with 13.5 million poor households all over the country. In his presentation, Dr AKM Nuruzzaman reflected on PKSF’s experience in targeting poor people in UJJIBITO project, ENRICH programme and PRIME project.


Dr Sharif Ahmed Chowdhury, General Manager, PKSF delivered a presentation titled ‘Expectation for M&E Framework of PPEPP project’. He said, the objective of PPEPP project is to enable 1 million people to exit extreme poverty in the next 5 years. It will address barriers that stop the poorest people willing to get out of the poverty.

The programme has to be cost effective. More integrated nutritional intervention, development of local markets. Disaster Management and climate resilience issue, community mobilization. PKSF will be working in resilient livelihood, nutrition and community mobilization and some other cross-cutting issues. PKSF, as the Core Implementing Partner, will implement livelihood, nutrition and community mobilization components of the project. Three cross-cutting issues—disaster and climate resilience, disability, and women’s empowerment leading to gender equality will also be implemented by PKSF.

-form PPEPP note-

Views from the discussant


The discussant, Md Rubaiyath Sarwar, Managing Director, Innovation Consulting Private Limited said despite decades of interventions, some households didn’t graduate. They fall back. The end goal is to eradicating extremely poverty by intervention. We are talking about sustainably eradicating poverty. What is already presented in PPEPP, there will be disability inclusive intervention, economic intervention, and so forth. People response intervention differently. Their ability to response intervention varies. So, we have to think how do we define targeting. There are some trends that comes back over again. We have to go back to find what worked and what didn’t. These households fall back because there is significant lack of resources, asset building capacities, land ownership. If any disease or economic shock strikes, they fall back.


[01:56:00] Open discussion

Monjur Rashid, Oxfam [verify]

The definition of extreme poverty is not backdated. Inclusive targeting for disable, elderly people. Occupational perspective.


Tradeoff, cost of targeting. Targeting people, you really want to target.

[Reazul Islam] [02:08:00]

Mistarget. From the beginning as good as possible. Targeting the extreme poor is very important. Instrument. As correctly as possible.

[Pidim Foundation] [02:12:00]

Selecting the area, seasonal migration is an indicator. Water logging. Socially excluded group, physical verification, Kurigram and Sherpur experience. Household mapping. Indicator- How much time they eat in a day. Living in others land. Only homestead land and no asset for IG. Mobility. Marriageable girls. Young widowed girl. Fixed target. Field experience.



Geographical Targeting: the programme will be implemented selected districts and upazilas of the regions where the prevalence of extreme poverty is high and the decline over the last decade have been slower than in other areas. These are: North-west refion, South-west coastal belt and the Haor region in the North-east region of Bangladesh. It will also cover some of the severe poverty pockets around the country.

Inclusive targeting: PPEPP will support 250,000 extremely poor (EP) households (primarily targeting women) to connect to mainstream economic growth and jobs. PPEPP is also designed to address the specific needs of excluded people, such as, people with disabilities, ethnic minorities elderly persons, etc. PPEPP will be inclusive targeting based on the PKSF’s 16 sub-categories of vulnerable extreme poor. Based on household income, food security, earning ability, productive asset and land holdings, extreme poor will be classified into vulnerable EP and moderate EP to provide them designated services. Households with disable person, elderly people, pregnant women, lactating women and children under-5 will also be identified to provide designated services of PPEPP. Extreme poor HHs exposed to climatic shocks like flood, water-logging, salinity, storms will receive appropriate services.


[02:54:00] Moderator –

Thanked everyone for participating.