Top Zambian Bank To Support SMEs Following New Investment
Ecobank Zambia has received USD 15 million worth of investment from its parent company Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (ETI).
The investment is part of a USD 200 Mn loan facility arranged by Netherlands Development Finance Company (FMO), a Dutch Development Bank and other DFIs.
The investment will be channeled to the SME sector where it will be given to enterprising SMEs across various sectors of the economy.
These small and medium-sized companies are crucial because they are an important engine room for the creation of jobs and the enhancement of economic growth.
The loan facility will be disbursed to help these businesses grow and in turn, drive economic growth.
Ecobank Zambia Managing Director Kola Adeleke said, “The USD15 Million investment by FMO into Ecobank demonstrates international investors’ approval and confidence in Ecobank’s strategy and prospects as a strong and sustainable pan-African financial services institution. It also demonstrates the ability of African corporates to access international capital markets.”
The Managing Director further noted that SMEs continue to lack access to credits reiterating the bank’s support for the sector.
“We believe that supporting SMEs will help stimulate economic growth due to the sector’s contribution towards the Gross Domestic Product and employment creation,” Mr. Adeleke said.
The SME sector is estimated to account for 97 percent of all businesses in Zambia. And Almost half (49 percent) perceive access to credit as a major obstacle to their business operations.
The SME sector of the Southern African country continues to record growth. About 27,000 jobs were created by small-and-medium enterprises (SMEs) in 2018 alone, this is according to the government.
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