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Tuesday, June 02, 2020

West Bengal: Bankers double credit line to farmers, MSME relief on cards

The West Bengal government will request the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to increase the additional credit limit to MSMEs to 30% from the existing 10%.

By: Express News Service | Kolkata | Updated: May 6, 2020 1:15:06 pm
Bankers agreed that Kisan Credit Card loan will be extended to nearly 4.6 million farmers. (Express Photo)

At a time when agriculture and micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) are floundering due to the coronavirus lockdown, bankers have decided to bail them out.

The State Level Bankers’ Committee (SLBC) in Bengal has doubled the Kharif loan outlay to Rs 10,000 crore from Rs 4,400 crore this season.

In FY 2019-20, a credit of Rs 74,000 crore was extended to MSMEs. This year, the target has been revised to Rs 90,000 crore.

A special SLBC meeting was held on Tuesday over video conference to discuss the action points to provide relief to the affected priority sectors and enhance credit delivery by banks to combat the unprecedented situation arising out of COVID-19.

The meeting was presided over by Finance Minister Amit Mitra and attended by bankers and secretaries.

The main thrust of the meeting was to give enhanced credit lending to the priority sectors such as agriculture, agri-allied sectors, MSMEs, fisheries, animal resources development, self-help group, food processing industries and horticulture, and exports, which have been badly affected due to lockdown and the COVID-19 pandemic.

Bankers agreed that Kisan Credit Card loan will be extended to nearly 4.6 million farmers.

A number of small and marginal farmers will also come under the fold of KCC. The extent of SHG coverage will also be more than doubled this year — from 5,17,000 to nearly 10 lakh. The loan target to SHG groups has been enhanced to Rs 15,000 crore this financial year. An additional limit of Rs 5,000 crore will also be given to SHGs, subject to a cap of Rs 1 lakh per SHG.

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