Women entrepreneurs to get priority
Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) can apply for loans under the government's incentive package to offset the coronavirus losses from Sunday.
The fund comes from the SME Foundation, who said last week that they will provide Tk100 crore of this in the current fiscal year and another Tk200 crore in the next fiscal year 2021-22.
A virtual press briefing revealed on Saturday that enterprises can apply for loans through Brac Bank, Mutual Trust Bank, Premier Bank, Basic Bank, and IDLC Finance.
Later, they can gradually apply for loans through the remaining banks and financial institutions that have signed an agreement with the SME Foundation.
Md Mafizur Rahman, managing director of SME Foundation, said that despite the target of distributing at least 25% of the loans allocated for women entrepreneurs under the incentive package, the foundation hopes that they will be able to disburse more than 50%.
He added that the goal of the foundation is to ensure that more women entrepreneurs will get loans at any cost.
Nazim Hasan Sattar, general manager of SME Foundation, said that women entrepreneurs from across the country, including members of various SME clusters, associations, and chambers, will get loans under this package.
On March 21, SME Foundation Chairman Md Masudur Rahman approved the policy and guidelines for disbursement of this loan program during their 120th meeting of the board of directors.
According to the guidelines, entrepreneurs will get loans at 4% interest under the incentive package. At the consumer level, the loan amount will be from a minimum of Tk1 lakh to a maximum of Tk75 lakh.
The loan can be repaid in a maximum of 24 equal monthly installments based on banker-customer relationship. After submitting the complete loan application along with the required documents to the bank, the concerned bank will take the initiative to disburse the loan in favor of the customer.
In general, loans will be disbursed in favour of single and joint ventures.
However, group-based loans can be disbursed in favor of a maximum of 5 entrepreneurs on the basis of banker-customer relationship and consensus in order to bring marginal small, especially women-entrepreneurs under the loan.
The SME Foundation, in consultation with partner banks and financial institutions, will appoint focal officers in one or more branches that are convenient for entrepreneurs.
Entrepreneurs will contact the focal officer, who will coordinate with the SME Foundation, the bank's head office and branches and entrepreneurs.