Abdul Zuhoor Qayomi-KABUL: Bank-e-Millie Afghan (BMA), a state-owned bank, has developed an indirect lending program for the local industries aimed at strengthening the local market.
According to a memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed between Bank-e-Millie Afghan and Afghanistan Industries Association (AIA), the Afghan industrialists would receive $200 million in indirect loans to increase their productions.
After inking the agreement, Chief of the AIA, Sakhi Muhammad Paiman, said that BMA would provide up to $200 million. While assuring the industrialists of low interest rate, he said the procedure has been simplified to much possible extent.
He said that though there are 16 private banks, but long-term loan facility has remained a dream of the industrialists in the past 13 years.
He said that lack of financial support was one of the main challenges in front of the local producers in the past 13 years, adding that the new lending program would promote the business environment in the country.
Chief of the BMA, Ahmad Khesrow Zia, said the bank has allocated $200 million for the program.
“The BMA will purchase machinery and raw materials in coordination with the companies,” he said.
Terming the lending program fruitful in strengthening of the local products, the deputy chief of AIA, Abdul Jabar Safi, said that the number of workers of the plants would reach to 450,000 from 320,000 in the country if the plants are provided with loans.
He said that number of workers would jump to 100 from 50 in every factory. The percentage of imports will also decrease by 20 percent. Products of 2,600 industries in Afghanistan will be exported to Central Asia, Safi added.
Commenting on the BMA’s new lending program, Chief of Peshraft Plastic Products Processing & Packing Company, Mujeeb, said the loans would prove effective in running his company. He said the number of employees would increase to around 35 from 20 in every plastic making company.
He said the plastic making plants ceased to work due to financial problems, but would restart activities after receiving loan based on the new program of the BMA.