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Bijad - How Micro-credit Loans Help Kick-start Local Businesses

How Fairtrade Premiums Pay for Micro-credit Loans

Twenty-four year old Bijad was born in Gidpur, Pakistan and attended a nearby school in Sialkot. He began stitching footballs when he was 18 to help with his family income. Bijad used to stitch four or five footballs a day making around 150 Rupees, which is the equivalent of £2.00. 

Bijad enjoys Pakistani music and playing pool which he utilised when he took out a micro credit loan of RS 50,000 when he was 20. Bijad purchased a small building and pool table, which cost him 43,000 Rupees so he could rent out the table providing local entertainment. He spent the rest of the money on equipment to set up a barber where he could earn between 10 and 30 Rupees a day for offering ‘cut throat’ shaves to supplement his income from the pool table business. 

By renting the pool table, Bijad earns around 300 Rupees a day; twice what we earned from stitching footballs therefore allowing him to completely pay off his loan over two years in 25 instalments.
The pool table provides a welcome form of entertainment in a poor village where there are few leisure activities for young people on offer. Bijad’s friend, Mohamed, is keen to point out that, “...this is the best thing to do here as before we got bored” demonstrating how appreciated a business like Bijad’s is.

Through our sourcing partners we support the Micro Credit Loan scheme to help Bijad and people like him.

Check out our other Fair Trade stories or more information on Fair Trade.

Published 11/10/11

Photo(s) ® M.Kunz Fair Deal Trading