Fund expected to support up to 100 MSMEs to continue their businesses, retain up to 1,000 jobs
KATHMANDU, Oct 22: One to Watch, with support from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), and in partnership with NMB Bank and Laxmi Bank, has announced the launch of ‘COVID-19 MSME Fund Nepal’.
Issuing a joint statement on Wednesday, they said that the Fund seeks to support medium and small enterprises (MSMEs) that are struggling to cope with the challenges brought forth by COVID-19.
“It will do so by providing them with bridge financing in order to meet the working capital needs and technical assistance in the form of business development services to be able to retain employees, preserve business continuity, and build resilience,” reads the statement. According to the statement, the Fund is expected to support up to 100 MSMEs to continue their businesses and help them retain up to 1,000 jobs.
The fund will provide collateral-free loans to MSMEs that are evaluated to have the potential to bounce back based on a predetermined set of criteria, according to the statement. The Fund will pay interest on such loans for a period of up to 18 months and a subset of such firms will also be provided with business development support that are tailored to meet the needs of beneficiary enterprises.
The Fund is expected to directly benefit creditworthy smaller entrepreneurs who require access to bank loans in order to sustain their businesses and livelihoods during an economy under stress.