SME D Bank aims to boost small firms' access to loans

SME D Bank aims to boost small firms' access to loans

Effort to help meet the lending criteria

The SME D Bank booth at the Money Expo held in May this year. Last year the bank extended loans worth 49.3 billion baht to 12,484 SMEs.
The SME D Bank booth at the Money Expo held in May this year. Last year the bank extended loans worth 49.3 billion baht to 12,484 SMEs.

The Small and Medium Enterprise Development Bank of Thailand (SME D Bank) has teamed up with partners to help SMEs access loans, says bank president Nartnaree Rathapat.

Ms Nartnaree said the bank talked to around 300 SMEs that did not meet the criteria to receive a loan to understand what assistance they needed.

Of these 300, the bank said it can help 10% of them make adjustments in order to qualify for a loan.

She said some SMEs did not qualify for loans because of poor accounting systems.

Last year SME D Bank extended loans worth 49.3 billion baht to 12,484 SMEs.

It also launched measures to ease SMEs' pandemic burden. The bank provided loans worth 66 billion baht to SMEs under its Covid-19 relief measures.

Ms Nartnaree said SME D Bank would try to keep its interest rates steady as long as possible to help SMEs avoid a severe impact from any future rate hikes by the Bank of Thailand.

Last week Finance Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith asked the Bank of Thailand to talk to commercial banks about whether they can raise their interest rates on a gradual basis if the central bank decides to increase its policy rate.

State-run Government Savings Bank vowed to try to maintain its interest rates for as long as possible amid rising global rates, in an effort to alleviate the burden on borrowers.

Many research houses expect Thailand to begin a cycle of policy rate hikes in the second half of this year in response to persistently high inflation.

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