Mr. Tariq Bajwa, Governor, State Bank of Pakistan today launched “Refinance and Credit Guarantee Scheme for Women Entrepreneurs in Underserved Areas” at an impressive ceremony in Quetta.
The Governor SBP while addressing the launch ceremony reiterated his commitment towards sustainable and inclusive economic growth across Pakistan “Women”, he added, “are central to this growth paradigm.”
The Governor informed the audience that it is for the first time in our history that a scheme with 0% refinance rate and 60% risk coverage for small businesses run by women entrepreneurs has been rolled out.
“This scheme is an affirmative action by the State Bank to encourage flow of funds to small enterprises run by women of underserved areas of Pakistan. The scheme earmarks, at least 20% of funds for Balochistan” said the Governor.
The salient features of the scheme are as follow:
- This facility is for women entrepreneurs in underserved areas of the country for setting up of new businesses or expansion of existing ones
- SBP will provide refinance to banks at 0%.
- Maximum financing amount is Rs 1.5 million.
- Maximum financing period is 5 years with grace period of up to 6 months.
- End user rate is 5% which is locked in for financing period.
- 60% risk coverage is available against outstanding principal.
He expressed his firm hope that banks will make all out efforts in making the scheme a success. He also told the banks that SBP will monitor the progress of the scheme closely. Chief Guest Speaker Balochistan Assembly Ms. Rahila Durrani while speaking on the occasion, lauded SBP’s scheme for small businesses run by women entrepreneurs of Pakistan particularly Balochistan. She was hopeful that such attractive financing schemes would help poor women overcome their financial problems and hence bring prosperity to the entire province.
Earlier in the day, Governor SBP called on Mr. Muhammad Khan Achakzai, Governor Balochistan. Governor SBP apprised Mr. Achakzai of SBP’s special focus on agriculture, SMEs and low cost housing in all underserved areas of Pakistan particularly Balochistan. Governor Balochistan thanked Governor SBP for his efforts in promoting access to finance for the underserved and the under banked.
The Governor SBP also met with members of Quetta Chamber of Commerce and Industry (QCCI). The office holders of QCCI while welcoming Governor SBP apprised him of issues being faced by the business community of Quetta. The Governor SBP assured members of QCCI of his help in resolving their genuine grievances.