The Business Initiative Leading Development (BUILD), an advocacy group, has called for a concise database of Covid-19 affected companies, and a census of small and medium enterprises (SMEs), to underscore the need to increase the scope of the Tk3,000-crore stimulus fund to reach cottage and micro businesses.
It asked the authorities to focus on the need for a quick and hassle-free loan processing system for the private sector–especially for cottage, micro, small and medium enterprises (CMSMEs)–which are in a worse situation compared to large enterprises.
For effective use of the credit guarantee scheme, BUILD proposed the idea of establishing a separate entity, maintaining all transparency and publishing a manual, soon.
The proposal came out at the 8th Financial Sector Development Working Committee (FSDWC) Meeting of BUILD held online on Tuesday.
BUILD Chief Executive Officer Ferdaus Ara Begum made the presentation titled "Stimulus Packages for Large & CMSMEs–Reforms for Better Utilisation for Recovery from Covid-19".
Bangladesh Bank's Deputy Governor Ahmed Jamal said, "Tk18,500 crore has been disbursed under the working capital loan stimulus package for the large industries and service sectors. The central bank governor has asked banks to disburse the entire amount under the stimulus package of CMSMEs by October 2020."
He said that all recommendations coming from BUILD, and discussions, will be taken into account and the Bangladesh Bank will take initiative to implement the recommendations, from their end, wherever possible.
Shams Mahmud, president of Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industries, who is the co-chair of the FSDWC of BUILD, thanked the central bank for the support it had already extended to all sectors, especially CSMEs, and to continue support the private sector with effective policy support and to look into the recommendations coming out of the meeting.
BUILD Chairperson Abul Kasem Khan requested the central bank form a small committee for the credit guarantee scheme to come up with the best practice model for this.
He also highlighted how non-banked CMSMEs can be reached with a financial support system.
Professor Dr Swapan Kumar Bala, FCMA, former commissioner of the Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission, focused on creating a suitable environment for entrepreneurs, so that it is easier for them to get loans.
Nazim Sattar, general manager of SME Foundation, requested the Bangladesh Bank make commercial banks provide loans to women entrepreneurs.