Bank South Pacific Retail Branches around PNG commenced processing of SME loan application under the SME Credit Enhancement Scheme Loan effective as of Thursday 22nd October , 2020, after receiving the K100 million funds appropriated under the program on Tuesday 20th October, 2020, at Hilton Hotel in Port Moresby.
The SME Credit Enhancement Scheme Loan is a short to long-term loan facility designed to assist with business operations, working capital requirements and purchase of business assets such as plant, equipment & vehicles for SMEs in various sectors of the economy including the agriculture sector.
BSP Group CEO Robin Fleming received the funding at a formal cheque presentation ceremony from Prime Minister, Hon. James Marape and Minister for Commerce & Industry, Hon William Duma.
"Now that funds are available, branches will commence processing loan applications from potential SME borrowers commencing Thursday 22nd October, 2020. The bank is acting as in trust for the government to keep the funds in a special Trust Account and part of our responsibility with that Trust Account is to ensure that loan applications are assessed under BSP's lending policies and procedures are adhered to," said Fleming.
"Access to finance under this scheme will be considered for SME businesses and companies that are 100% nationally owned and must also comply with regulatory requirements that includes registrations with Investment Promotion Authority (IPA), register for Tax Identification Number (TIN) with Internal Revenue Commission, and be able to meet their tax obligations annually," added Fleming.
SME owners irrespective of whether they bank with BSP can borrow amounts ranging from K5, 000 up to K3, 000,000 at a rate of 5 percent for a repayment period of up to 15 years, depending on the assets being financed under the facility.
Prime Minister Marape handed the cheque to Mr Fleming saying, "This SME Credit Enhancement Scheme Loan is the best with a lowest interest rate of 5% that any financial institution in the world is providing for its SME customers.
We are grateful for BSP as the leading and locally owned financial Institutions in the country to step out and continue to help our people in facilitating financial assistance. This is not the first time BSP has stepped forward to assist and we are grateful for that. BSP has also been actively facilitating one of the Government vital initiative, the First Home Ownership Scheme without governments support since 2015," Prime Minister Marape added.
BSP Group CEO Robin Fleming received the formal cheque from Prime Minister, Hon. James Marape witnessed by Minister for Commerce & Industry, Hon William Duma.