MVR 554 million in COVID-19 relief loans issued to large-scale businesses

Workers load cargo to a boat at the Male' Commercial Port on April 5, 2020. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

Bank of Maldives (BML) has issued over MVR 554.7 million in loans to large-scale businesses struggling to overcome the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Statistics released by the Finance Ministry shows MVR 554.7 million and USD 8 million in loans to 394 large-scale businesses were issued through BML by November 19.

Total 590 businesses have applied for relief loans from BML. The applications of 417 businesses have been approved so far, while the applications of 17 businesses have been rejected for various reasons.

The COVID-19 recovery loan scheme was introduced at the initiation of the Maldivian government, to support businesses mitigate the financial impact of the ongoing pandemic.

Resorts businesses are eligible for up to MVR 7.7 million, and non-resort businesses are eligible for up to MVR 1 million in loans under the COVID-19 recovery scheme.

Resorts need to have no nonpayment of assets at a financial institute and no overdue loan or financing facility, and must have been profitable last year, and must have positive projected cashflow for the last three years in order to be eligible for loans under the scheme.

Other businesses, meanwhile, are eligible for loans under the scheme if they produced an annual turnover above MVR 10 million, have no NPA, loan or financing facility due at a financial institute, and were profitable last year.

Loans issued under the scheme have an annual interest rate of 6 percent, and a payment period of three years.