Welcoming Address by
Mr. Abdivakhob Tamikaev
Chairman of APRACA
Chairman of the Board of OJSCB Agrobank, Uzbekistan
Mr. Ilyos Amanov
Deputy Chairman of the Board of OJSCB Agrobank, Uzbekistan
His Excellency, Mr. Chea Chanto, Governor of National Bank of Cambodia,
His Excellency, Mr. Pal Buy Bonnang, Assistant Governor of National Bank of Cambodia,
Dr. Ganesh Thapa, Regional Economist, International Fund for Agricultural Development,
Mr. Won-Sik Noh, Secretary General of APRACA
Distinguished delegates from APRACA member institutions,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It is my great honor to join you in the Grand Opening Ceremony of the Regional Forum on Strengthening the Resilience of Smallholder Farmers through Rural Finance Innovations, the 18th General Assembly of APRACA and the 61st Executive Committee Meeting of APRACA, and deliver a welcoming speech here today. I heartily welcome all of you to these events in the beautiful and historic city of Siem Reap and extend my deepest appreciation to you for your kind participation after long trips from your respective countries.
I am also extremely pleased to celebrate the 35th Anniversary of Asia-Pacific Rural and Agricultural Credit Association (APRACA) on the occasion of the Regional Forum and General Assembly of APRACA.
Since its inauguration in 1977, APRACA has endeavored to promote the development of financial institutions through diverse activities, and thus remarkably contributed to the enhancement of rural livelihood as well as the growth of agricultural production in the region. The number of member institutions of APRACA has increased from 37 members in 16 countries to 60 members in 23 countries during the period. I would like to attribute all the growth and development of APRACA to the active cooperation and unsparing support of the member institutions, and therefore, taking this opportunity, extend my deep gratitude to all the delegates attending..
APRACA has conducted four large projects in collaboration with international partner agencies since its inauguration. APRACA conducted the three-year Regional programme on Linkage Banking and Grassroots Financial Systems Development in late 1990’s by the support of the German International Cooperation and Development Agency. It also conducted the three-year Regional Programme on Collateral Substitutes in early 2000’s under the auspices of both UN International Labor Organization and the Swiss Development Corporation.
The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) offered APRACA the five-year MicroServe Programme in 1996, which was carried out successfully. In addition, IFAD offered FinPower Programme to APRACA for the period of 2007 to 2011. I am pleased to inform you that IFAD grant FinPower Program that aimed to promote the financial empowerment of the rural poor in Asia-Pacific countries through policy dialogue, innovative pilot programmes, and knowledge sharing among actors in rural finance sector, ended last year with very successful results. In this regard, I hope APRACA will be able to continue its collaborative programmes with IFAD based on the valuable platform built through the conduct of the FinPower Programme; accumulated knowledge and experiences on rural and agricultural finance, and a strong network with APRACA members.
Taking this opportunity, I would like to extend my deepest appreciation to Dr Ganesh Thapa, Regional Economist of IFAD who is here to congratulate APRACA General Assembly and its subsidiary meetings. He has given unfailing support to APRACA and does not spare his time and energy to develop APRACA.
Today, after this ceremony, we have the Regional Forum on “Strengthening Resilience of Smallholder Farmers through Rural Finance Innovations”. Distinguished moderators and speakers have been invited from APRACA member institutions as well as from external institutions including academic and business circles in and out of Asia. I would like to convey my warmest thanks to them and hope this Forum shows the future direction of APRACA in planning and conducting its activities for the members.
I would like to take this opportunity to convey my sincere gratitude to H.E. Chea Chanto, Governor of National Bank of Cambodia, H.E. Pal Buy Bonnang, Assistant Governor of the Bank and APRACA Vice-Chairman, and their Officers and staff members for their devoted efforts to prepare these meetings. I am also really impressed by the courtesy and hospitality given to us all participants by the host institution. I also wish to send my warmest appreciation to Mr. Won-Sik Noh, Secretary General of APRACA and his staff, and to heads and staff of APRACA Agencies; APRACA CENTRAB and APRACA Consultancy Services for their endeavor to prepare these meetings with a great passion.
Lastly, I would like to thank all the delegates come from APRACA member institutions for their enthusiasm to support APRACA activities including the participation in these meetings in the middle of the busy official duties in their institutions. I firmly believe that APRACA, as a member based organization, will be able to develop only by the strong cooperation and support from the members. In this regard, I appreciate your support and cooperation given to APRACA so far.
Again, I welcome all of you to these APRACA Regional Forum and General Assembly, and wish you a very comfortable stay in Cambodia.
Thank you very much.