Wednesday, 25 November 2020 18:07

Covid-19 hit SMEs to get ADB funding of US$165 million for survival

Sri Lanka’s Covid-19 battered small and medium-enterprises (SMEs) are to be infused financial life blood with funding from The Asian Development Bank (ADB), finance ministry sources said.

ADB has approved US$165 million loan to Sri Lanka to provide immediate financing support for small and medium-enterprises (SMEs), which have been severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic,

It will also provide long-term financing to underserve SMEs, including businesses led by women and tea smallholders.

COVID-19 has badly hit Sri Lanka’s economy due to the decline in demand and supply chain disruption in export-oriented industries, which has led to an economic slowdown that gradually spread across other sectors.

Financial support is critical for SMEs to revive their businesses, which account for over 45% of total employment and 52% of gross domestic product of Sri Lanka.

The new financing will build on the ongoing Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises Line of Credit Project, which ADB approved in 2016 to strengthen SMEs’ access to finance.

The project is cofinanced with a grant from the G20-led Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi) since 2018 to promote women entrepreneurship.

(LIN)

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