First Interest-Free Loans Given by SME Bank to Coronavirus-Affected Companies
SME Bank, a subsidiary of RSMB Corporation, has given the first interest-free loans to support coronavirus-affected small and medium-sized enterprises. Support was provided for three cargo carriers in the Krasnodar Territory and the Rostov Region and a freight business in the Perm Territory. The bank lent a total of 17.5 million roubles intended for salaries paid to 175 employees.
With support from SME Bank, the companies will be able to continue operations without interruption and pay stable salaries to their employees. The customers intend to adapt themselves to the new economic environment in the freight services market and maintain their current business.
As the bank’s existing customers, the companies received loans in record time, within one business day.
Russian Economic Development Minister Maxim Reshetnikov said: “Another programme we are launching this week is salary loans. The ultimate goal of our policy is to help businesses to retain and keep paying their employees. For this purpose, we’ve launched a rescue scheme: a business will be able to take out a zero-interest loan to pay a minimum wage to each employee. This will help out small and medium-sized enterprises across the industries affected during six months.”
As a reminder, SME Bank launched a new interest-free loan scheme on 1 April 2020 to help SMEs to meet the immediate needs related to supporting and retaining their employees, such as salary payments. The loan amount is calculated on the basis of the region-specific minimum wage and the number of staff members. The loan has a maturity of six months, a balloon payment and an interest rate of 0% p.a.
The new scheme is part of the Russian Government’s prompt measures to support small and medium-sized enterprises. The zero-interest loan has a limit of 5 billion roubles and is backed by a surety bond issued by VEB.RF to SME Bank. As previously noted by VEB.RF Chairman Igor Shuvalov, development institutions have all the necessary tools to react flexibly to the needs of the real economy and lend a helping hand to businesses and their employees.
VEB.RF Issues Surety Bonds Worth RUB10bn Each to Promsvyazbank and Otkritie Bank
Overall, VEB.RF has plans to issue surety bonds totalling 100 billion roubles to systemically important banks and SME Bank. The surety bonds are intended to secure the zero-interest loans given to small and medium-sized enterprises to finance their salary payments.
“As part of the Russian Government’s prompt measures to provide support for small businesses, VEB.RF issued surety bonds worth 10 billion each to Promsvyazbank and Otkritie Bank. The commercial banks are our reliable partners, and we have joined forces once again to support small enterprises. The surety bonds are intended to secure the zero-interest loans taken out by businesses for their salary payments. Overall, VEB.RF has plans to issue surety bonds totalling 100 billion roubles,” VEB.RF Chairman Igor Shuvalov said.
VEB.RF had previously issued surety bonds worth 20 billion roubles each to Sberbank and VTB to guarantee loans to small businesses.