Governor SBP visits MCCI reassuring business community facilitation for priority sectors Agriculture, SMEs, Housing and Exports

Governor State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Dr. Reza Baqir visited Multan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) today. While speaking about the various initiatives of SBP to facilitate the businesses, particularly the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), Governor Baqir said that SBP Aasan Finance Scheme (SAAF) will be a game changer in enhancing access to finance to SMEs as it addresses the long outstanding challenge of lack of collateral faced by SMEs.

From the outset he thanked the President MCCI Khawaja Muhammad Hussain for inviting him to visit and spoke at length about significance of SMEs in Pakistan against what they are getting in terms of access to finance, some of the initiatives SBP took to promote SME finance and potential role of SAAF in near future.  At the Chamber he met business community of the region and listened to their views directly.

Governor Dr Baqir highlighted that with the objective of stimulating sustainable economic growth of country, State Bank has been taking various initiatives to facilitate the business community. Some of the major initiatives include introduction of a unique collateral free loan scheme for SMEs; SME Asaan Finance (SAAF), SBP’s concessionary refinance schemes for different sectors, measures taken to combat the COVID-19 effects, digitization of banking systems and persuasion of banks to enhance financing to business community especially priority sectors.

During his meeting with the business community, Governor Dr. Reza Baqir discussed that COVID-19 pandemic was an unprecedented catastrophe that affected economic life of individuals and businesses nationally and internationally. He highlighted that the proactive policy response by SBP during COVID times especially refinance schemes i.e. TERF and Rozgar not only provided a breathing space to employees of business community, but also laid down sound foundations for medium to long term industrialization in the country.

Traversing on another theme, Governor SBP said that to provide affordable housing to masses, SBP is working rigorously on the implementation of Government of Pakistan’s Mera Pakistan Mera Ghar (MPMG) scheme. This facility allows individuals, who are constructing or buying a new house for the first time, to avail bank’s financing at subsidized and affordable mark-up rates. To this end, SBP has taken various measures to make regulatory environment more conducive for the growth of this sector. A complaint resolution mechanism is also available through online complaint management system for MPMG since January 2021. He suggested that Multan Chamber can play an active role in creating awareness among employees of its members to avail financing under MPMG. Chamber’s President pledged his commitment in this regard.

Governor at the end, assured the continued support and facilitation of the central bank for business community and also advocated them to continue playing their effective role in overall economic growth of the country.

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