Rwanda: Loans to SMEs up 29 per cent in 2012
Loans granted to Rwandan small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have increased by 29.45 per cent in 2012, according to new figures released by the Ministry of Finance.Banks lent a total amount of Rwf152 billion (€184 million) to SMEs last year, up from Rwf118.4 billion in 2011, East African Business Week reports.
These figures are partly due to government efforts to boost the private sector, especially SMEs, which contribute up to 80 per cent of GDP.
Amongst these efforts, the government has recently set up a business development fund which provides SMEs with guarantees to help them secure loans.
"We want to see how we can encourage financial institutions to design SME-friendly products as one way of increasing lending to SMEs", said Rita Ngarambe, Executive Secretary of Association of Microfinance, quoted by the news source.
Last September, Fina Bank had also reported an increase in SME lending, which had gone up by 115 per cent since 2011.
The bank said it would be stepping up lending to SMEs through a new range of products and additional training on SME lending for its staff.