KATHMANDU, Jan 6: The Federation of Nepali Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FNCCI), in a meeting with Finance Minister Bishnu Prasad Paudel, has urged the government to extend the loan settlement period by at least next three months for small and medium enterprises (SMEs). The umbrella organization of the private sector business entities made such an appeal in the context of banks exerting pressure on the SMEs to pay back the loan on time.
The private sector body has said half of the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) will be closed if the loan payment period for them is not extended.
Earlier, the government had set a timeline of mid-January for the SMEs to pay the bank loan. According to the entrepreneurs, the SMEs have not regained their full-fledged business and cannot pay the loan within the given deadline.
According to the Credit Information Bureau, banks have kept around 2,800 enterprises, most of them SMEs, in the blacklist in the past nine months. “Apart from extending the deadline for loan payment, COVID affected SMEs should also be given special privileges such as tax benefits and market promotion package to help them sustain businesses,” reads a statement issued by the FNCCI.