CAIRO: The Alexandria Bank AlexBank signed a $10 million loan agreement with Sanad Fund on Monday to fund small and medium-size enterprise (SME). The loan will be enough to fund and promote investments of more than 150 SMEs, Al-Mal reported Monday.
The signed loan is considered the first investment horizon for Sanad Fund of SMEs in Egypt. The loan came within AlexBank’s keenness to promote the sector, find other international sources for finance, and increase SMEs’ participation within the national economy.
“Besides providing the needed finance for the projects, AlexBank is set to provide technical support and allow many kinds of loans with different repayment system as to meet the entrepreneurs’ investment needs,” AlexBank CEO Roberto Vercelli said.
Vercelli addressed that the SMEs’ finance was within AlexBank’s societal responsibility to promote Egypt’s economy, lessen burdens on the poor especially breadwinning women, and raise the standards of living.
The importance of SME industries lies in their ability to create job opportunities, diversify incomes, boost growth rates, and provide stainable income for breadwinning women since a tangible part of SMEs are acquired by women.
Minister of Planning Ashraf Al-Araby announced that more than one third of SME loans and investments will be directed for breadwinning women to provide an income for them and help them with their life burdens, Youm7 reported June 1.
SMEs represent 90 percent of total companies in Egypt and provide between 70-80 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and about 75 percent of job opportunities and serve major industries.
Sanad Fund for SMEs was inaugurated by KFW Development Bank with financial support from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the European Union in August 2011, according to the fund’s official homepage.