Banker to the Poor


I presented to my friend a book, “Banker to the Poor” by the Nobel laureate, Prof Mohammad Yunus.

Prof Mohammad Yunus who is known as the “banker to the poor” for making small loans in impoverished countries, is now doing business in the center of capitalism — New York City. In the past year the first U.S. branch of his Grameen Bank has lent $1.5 million, ranging from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars, to nearly 600 women with small business plans in the city’s borough of Queens. Grameen America says its loan repayment rate is more than 99 percent. In fact, U.S. President Barack Obama recently announced the creation of a $100 million microfinance growth fund for small lenders in the Western Hemisphere to allow poor people to continue making loans despite the global recession (1).

It is interesting to note the emerging of new subject in economy called Social Business. It is based on Prof Yunus work, complimented by a statements made by The President of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development Bjorn Stigson, “Business cannot survive in societies that fail.” As Yunus noted, “Half of the world’s population lives on two dollars a day. Over one billion people live on less than a dollar a day.” (2)

Does it means a failure to capitalism as socialism has miserably failed in the Eastern and Central Europe? Does it means the West is learning some wisdom from the East? Leave it to time to tell us the answer.

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(1) Reuters
(2) http://muhammadyunus.org

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