Monday, 01 June 2020 15:12

Commercial Bank to disburse Rs. 10 billion among SMEs

The Commercial Bank of Ceylon has announced the commitment of approximately Rs. 10 billion to a bank-funded COVID-19 Support Loan Scheme to assist affected Small and Medium Enterprises.(SME).

This assistance would be in addition to the working capital loans scheme implemented under a credit line provided by the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CB), the bank’s media release revealed. .

The bank has obtained a short term loan of US$ 50 million from a development finance institution for this purpose, and said these loans would be provided at an annually reviewed concessionary interest rate of 8 per cent per annum.

Intended to fund the working capital requirements of businesses affected by the shutdown necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic, these loans would be available to businesses whose annual sales turnover is below Rs. 750 million.

The scheme was designed especially to help midsized SME enterprises that missed out on the benefits of the CB-supported ‘Saubhagya Covid-19 Renaissance Facility.’

The bank will provide loans of Rs. 2 million to Rs. 25 million to eligible businesses under this new scheme, and has identified several sectors for priority. Furthermore, the bank said women-connected businesses, export-related businesses, and agriculture-related businesses have been earmarked as priority segments under the scheme.

The sectors identified under this scheme are Food & Beverage, Herbal & Medicinal Products, IT & Software Development, Spices & Processed Spices, Textile & Garments including health-based protective products, Rubber-based Products and innovative Light Engineering products.

(LIN)

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