The inaugural program for awarding loans was held recently at People’s Bank in Nuwara Eliya branch under the patronage of People's Bank Chairman Hemasiri Fernando.
‘Swashakthi’ Loan scheme offers loans and financial aid to new and existing entrepreneurs engaged in businesses related to agriculture, animal husbandry, industrial and service sectors at grass-root level. The program was implemented by People’s Bank with the objective of joining the government’s initiative for generating one million jobs by establishing micro, small and medium scale enterprises island-wide. The bank also expects to boost the rural economy via the inclusion of new technologies in addition to utilization of rural resources by fostering skills of rural youth.
The Swashakthi Loan Scheme will also see to the empowerment of micro entrepreneurs, new entrants with innovative business ideas, graduates, women as well as differently-abled youths from the rural communities.
Accordingly, the bank will disburse a business loan of up to Rs. 250,000 to at 5.5% concessionary interest rate to small and medium scale entrepreneurs. In addition, the new entrants will benefit from a grant of up to Rs. 50,000. The beneficiaries will also receive a period of five years to repay the loan, which includes a maximum grace period of 12 months.