A presentation of K900,000 was done today by the Department of Trade, Commerce and Industry to Bank South Pacific Ltd, under the SME Access to Finance Project for the implementation of the Loan Origination System, Lendfast.
BSP Group CEO Robin Fleming said, "The successful rollout of this system meets the requirement of the World Bank's Performance Based Grant; an agreement that BSP signed on in 2013. The agreement was to develop and deliver tailored banking products suitable for SMEs in PNG."
In presenting the cheque to BSP, Minister for Trade Commerce and Industry, Wera Mori, said, "It gives me great confidence to work with your team - especially the staff from the SME Smart Business Unit for working tirelessly to ensure the loan originating system is fully rolled out."
Minister Mori said, "In the last five years the PNG SME Access to Finance Project under my Department has partnered well with the World Bank and its stakeholders and provided capacity building to provincial commerce divisions throughout the country, trained-36 Business Development Officers in 22- provinces, trained 774 SMEs. Previously we provided technical support to BSP to develop and market Papua New Guinea's first ever SME Smart Business Loans.
Minister Mori acknowledged the World Bank, International Finance Corporation, Department of Treasury and National Planning for providing their endless support to the PNG SME Access to Finance Project for successfully implementing.
"Today we acknowledge and witness another milestone achieved by BSP in the successful rollout of the loan originating platform to enhance loan underwriting standards for the SME sector," added Minister Mori.
"With the successful rollout of the Lendfast System, every BSP branch in PNG is able to facilitate an SME Loan, providing more access for the SME sector in PNG. The platform has so far enhanced the loan underwriting standards and achieved positive results and improved turnaround time on loan funding," explained Stanerd Wai, Manager SME.
"BSP has funded over K500 million SME Loans, of which K79 million originated through the Lendfast System," added Wai.