ECONOMY

Fund ready to issue loan guarantees for small firms

The Development Ministry’s guarantees fund for loans to small and medium-sized enterprises is ready to start operating with a budget of 50 million euros that can guarantee loans of up to 150 million euros.

The ministry announced on Tuesday that the fund can begin helping SMEs secure loans after it has reached agreements with the banks that will be participating in the funding scheme. They are Alpha-Emporiki, National, Eurobank, Piraeus, Attica, Hellenic Postbank, Probank, Pankritia Cooperative Bank, Western Macedonia Cooperative, Thessaly Cooperative, Peloponnesian Cooperative and Hania Cooperative.

The loans that the fund is seen guaranteeing concern the funding of five- to 10-year business plans ranging from 10,000 to 800,000 euros (80 percent guaranteed), funding for specific business plans to implement state-subsidized programs (70 percent guaranteed), and business development funding ranging from 10,000 to 800,000 euros (80 percent guaranteed).

The fund’s guarantees can supplement other programs that are also unfolding through the cooperation of the Development Ministry’s Entrepreneurship Fund with banks.