September 1, 2021 3:04:16 am
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday said government-guaranteed loans for Covid-affected sectors would help in building healthcare infrastructure and related capacity to help deal with a possible third wave.
Under the Rs 50,000-crore Loan Guarantee Scheme for Covid Affected Sectors (LGSCAS), banks would provide loans for building healthcare infrastructure in non-metro cities and smaller towns at a maximum interest rate of 7.95 per cent. The scheme will be applicable to all eligible loans sanctioned during the period from May 7, 2021 till March 31, 2022.
Sitharaman said the Centre is in talks with industry and services sector stakeholders to ensure that the economic revival is well supported. “There is still a need for more trained doctors, more nurses, testing facilities, paramedics support system to ensure that Covid-19 impact is contained.”
“… so what this loan guarantee scheme does is to take care of nearly 70 per cent, I would say, of the requirements of being ready for a possible third wave, we want to prevent it … all of us will have to be together in putting the rights efforts in ramping up facilities at hospitals,” she said at a online event on modernising healthcare ecosystem organised by Department of Financial Services, Health Ministry and NITI Aayog.
“We need to have tier 2, tier 3 towns and municipalities be ready with right kind of equipments,” the FM said. The Centre had, in June, launched LGSCAS to give financial guarantee cover for brownfield expansion and greenfield projects related to health and medical infrastructure.
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