FCBs, 9 NBFIs give no SME loan in rural area in 2011AKM Zamir Uddin
Nine foreign commercial banks operating in the country did not disburse any loan to the rural entrepreneurs in 2011 under the small and medium enterprises credit programmes of the Bangladesh Bank, BB data showed.
According to the latest BB data, nine non-bank financial institutions out of 31 NBFIs also did not disburse any loan to the rural entrepreneurs under the BB programme in the period.
A BB official told New Age on Thursday that the foreign commercial banks and the NBFIs were reluctant to disburse SME loans in the rural area as the central bank had not yet imposed on them any mandatory rules and regulations for such loan disbursement in the area.
BB data showed the FCBs had disbursed a total of Tk 1,242.35 crore in SME loans in 2011.
The FCBs operating in the country are Bank Al-Falah, Citibank NA, Commercial Bank of Ceylon, Habib Bank, HSBC, National Bank of Pakistan, Standard Chartered Bank, State Bank of India and Woori Bank.
Of them, Citibank NA disbursed no SME loan, in rural and urban area, in the period.
The NBFIs which did not disbursed any SME loan in the rural area in the period were BIFC, GSP Finance, IIDFC, LankaBangla Finance, People Leasing and Finance, Prime Finance, ULC, Union Capital and Infrastructure Development Company.
The BB official said the central bank had not specified proportion of SME loans to be disbursed by banks and NBFIs in the rural and urban areas.
‘As a result, the FCBs and a number of NBFIs have not disbursed any SME loans in the area last year,’ he said.
An official of an FCB said that the FCBs failed to disburse SME loans in the rural area as most of the banks had no branches in the area.
The banks also have not adequate manpower to operate the credit programme in the area, he said.
Sukamal Sinha Chowdhury, general manager of the SME and special programmes department of BB, said the central bank had asked the FCBs to take proper steps to disburse SME loans in the rural area.
‘We have assured them that the BB will provide necessary support to the FCBs, if they take move in this regard,’ he said.
According to the SME credit policy of the BB, the banks, which have no branches in the remote and rural area, can operate the credit programme through non-government organisations and microfinance institutions, he said.
He said that three meetings were held between the SME heads of the FCBs and the BB on April 17 and 18. In the meetings, the central bank had asked them to disburse SME loans in the rural area, he said.
He, however, hoped when the cluster-based SME programme would be fully operational, such problem would be removed.
He said the BB also asked the NBFIs to concentrate the loan disbursement in the rural area.
BB data showed that banks and NBFIs disbursed a total of Tk 53,719.44 crore in SME loans in 2011.
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