PM assures affordable credit flow for SMEs

Written by Economy Bureau | New Delhi, Aug 30 | Updated: Aug 31 2007, 05:07am hrs
Assuring increased and affordable credit flow to small and medium enterprises (SMEs), a major hurdle for the sector, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday said that the recently announced policy package for stepping up credit to the sector would enable doubling the credit flow to SMEs in the next fiver years.

The Prime Minister also called upon the banks and financial institutions to extend support to SMEs, particularly through risk and venture capital support. The government has already set up a Credit Guarantee Fund to provide relief to small entrepreneurs who are unable to pledge collateral security. Singh, while giving national awards for micro, small and medium enterprises here, also said the government was finalising a scheme to provide health insurance to the poor, besides offering life and disability cover to one earning member of each economically weak family. The scheme would also include an old-age pension to citizens above 65 years.