The government has announced that it will soon begin disbursing loans from the Rs 50 billion fund for the recovery, rehabilitation and continuity of COVID-hit businesses.

A meeting of the committee formed to implement procedure for disbursing loans held on Friday decided to open loan disbursement applications from November 25 as per the Business Continuity Disbursement Guidelines.

The committee is chaired by the secretary of the Ministry of Finance. Other members of the committee are the revenue secretary, comptroller and auditor general, deputy governor of Nepal Rastra Bank, president of Nepal Bankers’ Association and joint secretary of the Ministry of Finance.

The meeting decided that the Ministry of Finance would manage resources for the flow of loans. NRB will instruct commercial banks to operate accounts, disburse loans, and open loan disbursement application from November 25. Procedures to avail loan will be mentioned in the notice announcing opening of the application process.

The Cabinet meeting held on November 12 had passed guidelines based on the budget announced for the current fiscal.

As per the budget announcement, the government will open a ‘business operation continuity loan flow research’ account worth Rs 50 billion. Concessional loans will be provided via the account to domestic small and medium enterprises, and tourism businesses that have been affected by the coronavirus crisis and are facing difficulties in operating.

Highly-affected businesses can avail loans up to Rs 100 million, moderately-affected businesses can get loans up to Rs 70 million, and less-affected businesses will be eligible for loans up to Rs 50 million.

A version of this article appears in print on November 23, 2020 of The Himalayan Times.

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