SME Bank revealed that it has approved 940 applications under the Special Relief Facility (SRF), which was introduced through the Prihatin economic stimulus package in March 2020. This amounted to a disbursement of RM503.04 million.
Aside from that, the bank has also processed 15 Agrofood Facility (AF) applications as of 28 July 2020, which totalled to RM7.83 million.
“In addition to the above facilities, the Automation and Digitalisation Facilities (ADF) and All Economic Sectors (AES) Facility are among the funds provided by Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) to assist SME entrepreneurs affected by the Covid-19 crisis,” said the bank in a statement.
SME Bank also noted that it had been entrusted to manage the SME Go Scheme and SME Technology Transformation Fund (STTF) under the PENJANA economic recovery plan. These initiatives were intended to support the sustainability of SME businesses in the post-Covid-19 economy, particularly those in the construction, services, and manufacturing sector.
“We have allocated RM1.6 billion for the SME Go Scheme and RM500 million for the SME Technology Transformation Fund (STTF) respectively,” said the chief executive officer and group president of SME Bank, Aria Putera Ismail. Both the financing aids add up to a total of another RM2.1 billion.
Aria Putera further commented that the digital transformation programme previously undertaken by SME Bank had enabled it to improve its operational efficiency and service quality by reducing redundant processes and utilising digitisation as a financing solution. The programme, which took place over two years, saw SME Bank setting new directions and projects to improve its services for the digital economy.
“This has helped the bank to shorten the application process especially during the Covid-19 crisis in which SME entrepreneurs need financial assistance quickly,” said Aria Putera.
(Source: The Star)