Sri Lanka’s Central Bank chips in with Rs. 5 bn concessionary loans to help revive tsunami hit SME sector

Sri Lanka’s Central Bank is stumping up Rs. 5 bn through concessionary loans for small and medium sector affected by the Boxing Day tsunami. Sri Lanka’s Central Bank is stumping up Rs. 5 bn through concessionary loans for small and medium sector affected by the Boxing Day tsunami. Disbursed through local lending institutions, the loan comes with a one year grace period payable over three to eight years, the Central Bank said Wednesday.

“It’s designed in such a way that the cost to the end user is six percent and the loans will be used to fund up to 85 percent of viable project proposals,” the bank’s Deputy Governor W A Wijewardene said.

The bank estimate’s Sri Lanka’s reconstruction bill at about US$ 1.5 bn, which includes US$ 550 mn imports of foreign machinery and equipment to rebuild the country.

There has been an overwhelming response from donors for cash and other forms of humanitarian assistance.

Besides US$ 100 mn from the World Bank, the Central Bank says ADB, Japan, USAID have come forward to help.

Pledges from friends of Sri Lanka, who have been moved by the devastation, have already exceeded millions of do