Chin State SMEs to Be Eligible For K8.5 bn Worth of JICA Loans

Chin State’s small and medium busi­nesses (SMEs) will be eligible for up to K8.4 billion worth of small loans which the govern­ment plans to make avail­able later this financial year, a union minister has said.

The funds are the re­mainder of a K50 billion Japanese loan granted to the government for the development of local SMEs in 2015.

Chin State was one of just four states and re­gions to miss out on K41.5 billion worth of SME loans which were dis­persed amongst 186 local businesses last fiscal year.

“Chin weaving and ag­riculture businesses such as those growing yams, avocados and coffee are under consideration for small loans this year,” U Khin Maung Cho, the Minister for Industry, told parliament.

“There is no specific loan allocation scheme to Chin State from interna­tional organizations, but if they want to access to low-interest loans they can contact the newly-established Central Com­mittee for Development of SMEs,” he said.

The minister was re­sponding to Chin State MP Daw Khin Swe Lwin who asked whether the union government had plans make small loans available to Chin SMEs.

Chin State is one of the country’s most impov­erished, but since taking office, the NLD state gov­ernment has laid out a raft of policies for job creation and poverty reduction which include improving the agricultural sector, in­frastructure, SME devel­opment, human resource development, and envi­ronmental conservation.

State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, who is also joint-chairperson of the Central Committee for Development of SMEs, said in March the impor­tance of improving oppor­tunities for SMEs cannot be ignored because they make up 99 percent of the country’s economic force.

As part of the Japan In­ternational Cooperation Agency’s (JICA) K50 bil­lion loan, K41.5 billion went to 186 businesses from 6 states and regions, including 98 in Yangon region, 26 in Mandalay region and 11 in Bago re­gion last year.

Local lenders Kanbawza Bank, Myanmar Citizen Bank, SME Development Bank, Ayeyarwady Bank, Co-operative Bank, and Myanmar Apex Bank were able to grant loans to SMEs.

Interested SMEs in Chin State can also apply for loans at local banks with applications to be reviewed by their board of directors, said U Khin Maung Cho.


Source: Myanmar Business Today

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