By Pavan Sharma, Partner at BCL India. It has been slightly over 100 days since the lockdown was announced in India. The pandemic shows no signs of receding or flattening yet. As the fight continues, we are constantly reminded that we battle on two fronts – health and economics.
Excerpt from the article
The broad contours of the scheme are as follows
- Any business whose (a) outstanding loan balance from banks on 29 Feb 2020 was up to Rs. 25 Crores and (b) annual turnover in 2019-20 was up to Rs. 250 Crores [updated now], would be eligible for the scheme,
- Any Scheduled Commercial Banks (SCBs) & NBFC (operational for at least 2 years as on 29 Feb 2020) can lend,
- The maximum amount the business can borrow is 20% of the loan balance on 29 Feb 2020. If the business has borrowed from multiple banks, it can apply to anyone for the entire sum, and
- Interest rate would be capped to 9.25% (SCBs) / 14% (NBFCs). The business would enjoy a moratorium of 1 year and will have to repay the loan in the next 3 years.
There is a clear directive by the policymakers that the SME should not go through any hassle to obtain this loan. As the name goes, it is an ‘automatic facility’ for those who have borrowed earlier. Thus, credit assessment and KYC should not be necessary. Further, the application process should be digital and fast.
The Union Cabinet on May 20, 2020 approved an Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) with a corpus of Rs 41,600 crore for about five months ending on October 31.The scheme provides for an easy additional working capital loan at a concessional rate of interest to an existing borrower who was not a defaulter.
The government has also extended the scheme to larger units with turnover upto Rs. 250 Crore & to individual professionals like doctors and chartered accountants.
“The government has already extended its scope by enhancing eligibility criteria to include larger units and also allowed individual professionals such as doctors, chartered accountants and cab drivers. The proposal to continue the scheme beyond October is also under consideration, the officials with direct knowledge of the matter said requesting anonymity”, Reports Hindustan Times