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More SMES given access to soft loans thanks to new credit guarantees: BOT

Oct 30. 2020
 BOT assistant governor Jaturong Jantarangs
BOT assistant governor Jaturong Jantarangs
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By The Nation

Many more small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) will be able to access the Bank of Thailand (BOT)’s soft loan scheme after the Thai Credit Guarantee Corporation (TCG) agreed to provide loan guarantees, said BOT assistant governor Jaturong Jantarangs on Thursday.

Much of the Bt500-billion in soft loans made available in April to support SMEs hit by the Covid-19 crisis has gone unused due to tight loan conditions.

To help SMEs, the TCG has stepped in to provide guarantees from the third to the 10th year of the loan term, he said.

The TCG will use its Bt57 billion fund to take on risk by agreeing to compensate up to 30 per cent of any loan that turns into bad debt.

As of October 19, banks had approved loans worth a total Bt119.7 billion for 71,284 SMEs. 

More than three-quarters (76.1 per cent) took loans of up to Bt20 million. About 17.4 per cent took loans of Bt20 to Bt100 million, while 6.5 per cent borrowed Bt100 to Bt500 million.

The average loan is worth Bt1.7 million.

Rak Vorrakitpokatorn, president of TCG, said the new loan term of up to 10 years is very attractive compared with previous two-year repayment window under the soft loan scheme.

Surat Leelataviwat, executive vice president at Kasikornbank, said loan guarantees provided by TCG will encourage banks to lend more under the BOT’s soft loan scheme.

As of October 11, Kasikornbank had lent a total Bt21.7 billion to 6,800 borrowers under the soft loan scheme.

Since the Covid-19 outbreak early this year, Kasikornbank has extended credit worth Bt200 billion to businesses, including Bt120 billion of the bank’s own money.

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