Non-profit research and advocacy organization Unnayan Shamannay organized a post-budget seminar titled “Extreme Poverty Eradication: Role of National Budget” at the VIP Lounge of the National Press Club, Dhaka this morning. Dr. Taiabur Rahman, Professor of Department of Development Studies, University of Dhaka presented the keynote paper on behalf of Unnayan Shamannay and Former Chairman of Bangladesh Krishi Bank and Emeritus Fellow of Unnayan Shamannay Khondker Ibrahim Khaled Chaired the seminar. Nazmul Haque Prodhan MP (parliamentary constituency- Panchagarh 1) and Tipu Sultan MP (parliamentary constituency- Barisal 3) were present at the event as guests of honor. The keynote paper pointed out that in the proposed budget resources worth 2.2 percent of GDP is allocated for SSNPs, while from this allocation not more than 0.5% of GDP is reaching the extreme poor of the country. However, to rid the country of extreme poverty within 2020-21, we should allocate at least 1.2 percent of the GDP for the extreme poor. Thus we need to allocate additional 0.7% of GDP for the extreme poor and this additional allocation need to be invested for replicating successful targeted livelihood programs. Tipu Sultan MP in his remarks pointed out while the government is determined to completely eradicate extreme poverty, it is also faced with scarcity of resources. However, he opined, the government even at the face of resource scarcity has been and will keep on allocating significant amount of resources for extreme poverty eradication. Nazmul Haque Prodhan MP inferred that it would have been possible for the government to invest resources worth as much as 3 percent of the GDP for safety nets, if they had not been forced to allocate money for recapitalization of the state owned banks. Hence he recommended- the government needs to effectively deal with corruption and institutional failures across the economy to save resources, which then could be channeled to finance programs for extreme poverty eradication. In the closing remarks Chair of the seminar, Ibrahim Khaled said- we now need to differentiate allocations in the budget for the moderate poor and the extreme poor. That is, the budget proposal should deal with the bottom 10 percent of the people (i.e. the extreme poor) as a separate class and finance special initiatives like the targeted livelihood programs that would exclusively operate for extreme poverty eradication.