The country’s banks have sanctioned loans worth Tk 2,065 crore for the cottage, micro, small and medium entrepreneurs in more than three month of the launch of a Tk 20,000-crore stimulus package by the government for the businesses.
Although the sanctioned amount represents around 10 per cent of the package, the disbursement of loans is still around Tk 600 crore, or 3 per cent of the total stimulus package size, which reflects the banks’ reluctance to issue credit to the CMSMEs, a Bangladesh Bank official said.
The BB prepared the statistics based on July 15 reports of the banks.
The disbursement has remained dismal despite the fact that the central bank has already instructed all the scheduled banks to complete CMSME loan disbursement fully by August this year.
The banks will have to disburse another Tk 19,400 crore in one and a half months to comply with the BB instruction.
Bankers said that as the disbursement of loans to the large borrowers required less resource for the banks to monitor and to sanction the loans while it required higher number of employees to monitor and scrutinise CMSME loans, the banks were reluctant to issue loans to the CMSMEs.
They said that the CMSMEs were used to taking term-loans but the stimulus package was designed to disburse as working capital loans.
Besides, inability of the CMSMEs to give collateral against loans was another reason for the dismal loan disbursement to the CMSMEs under the stimulus package, the bankers said.
To solve of the collateral-related problem, the BB board at a meeting last week approved the formation of a Tk 2,000-crore credit guarantee scheme to support cottage, micro and small enterprises that lack adequate assets to pledge for bank loans.
The scheme would be adequate to issue guarantee against the working capital loans amounting to Tk 8,320 crore to be issued to such entrepreneurs.
The board has approved the scheme so that the banks do not feel discomfort in disbursing loans to the CMS sector borrowers for lack of collateral.
A senior official of the central bank told New Age that the disbursement of loans would gear up soon ones the BB started issuing credit guarantee to the banks against the CMS sector borrowers.
Under the scheme, the banks would get a certain amount of the outstanding bank loans from the central bank if they fail to collect the loans issued without any collateral.
On April 15 this year, the central bank issued guidelines outlining that the CMSMEs would get loans at 9 per cent interest from the banks under the stimulus package.
Of the interest, the government would provide 5 percentage points as subsidy and the borrower would pay the rest 4 percentage points interest.
Due to the slow loan disbursement to the sector, the central bank also relaxed the loan classification rules for the CMSME sector so that the banks feel encouraged to issue credit to them.
Last week, the BB also issued a simplified loan application form for the enterprises of the sector as the loan disbursement under the scheme has remained very low.
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