More than 95% MSMEs benefitted under ECLGS

As informed by the National Credit Guarantee Trustee Company Limited, the agency which operates the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS), as on 11.3.2022, a total of 117.87 lakh businesses have been supported with 100% guaranteed collateral free loans under ECLGS of which about 95.21% were MSMEs. This was stated by Union Minister of State for Finance Dr Bhagwat Kisanrao Karad in a written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha today.

The Minister stated that the ECLGS was launched in May 2020 as part of the Aatmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan to support eligible Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) and other eligible business enterprises in meeting their operational liabilities and restarting their businesses in the context of the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. It covered all the sectors of the economy. 100% guarantee is provided to Member Lending Institutions (MLIs) in respect of the credit facility extended by them under the scheme to eligible borrowers, the Minister added.

The Minister also stated that pursuant to an announcement made by the Finance Minister in her speech on the Union Budget 2022-23 that ECLGS will be extended till March 2023, Government has extended the scheme by one year, till 31.3.2023.

Giving more details, the Minister stated that the structure of scheme allows easy access to credit as the lenders offer pre- approved loans based on borrower’s existing credit outstanding and there is no fresh appraisal undertaken by lenders since additional credit is sanctioned over and above the credit facilities already assessed. Further, the interest rate is also capped with a view to lower the cost of credit and loans are sanctioned without any processing charges, pre- payment charges and guarantee fee.

On a question on RBI’s views on the MSME sector, the Minister stated that RBI has observed in its Financial Stability Report, December 2021 that MSMEs are reflecting signs of stress. In this connection, RBI has informed that the MSME portfolios of Commercial banks indicate accumulation in the non-performing asset and special mention account – 2 categories in September 2021, relative to March 2021.