The National Integration and Reconciliation Ministry has made special budgetary allocation of Rs.1,500 million for an innovative programme on “Reconciliation-Focused Economic Empowerment Project” which aims at strengthening North-South economic and business links.
The ministry said in a statement that the main objective of this project was to improve the production capacity of entrepreneurs in the North and East and border districts to establish links with buyers and exporters from rest of the country through which inter-ethnic, inter-religious and inter-regional ties will be strengthened to ensure healthy integration.
National Integration and Reconciliation Ministry Secretary V. Sivagnanasothy said the project would also provide livelihood support to conflict-affected vulnerable families specially the refugee returnees, internally displaced persons (IDPs) and war victims. He said assistance would be prioritized to families headed by women, families with disabilities, disabled ex-combatants, families with missing persons and those living under extreme poverty.
Mr. Sivagnanasothy said the project would support the micro enterprises in the conflict-affected areas to enhance value chain and facilitate linkages between North and South. It will cover sectors such as agriculture, fisheries, livestock, self-employment, micro/small industries, handicrafts and services. The project will support training, technology transfer, machinery, working capital, market facilitation and credit facilitation said Mr. V. Sivagnanasothy Secretary Ministry of National Integration and Reconciliation
The project aims to strengthen reconciliation efforts, reduce poverty in the North and East and border districts through livelihood support and economic empowerment of communities.