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Micro loans of below RM50,000 for Indian entrepreneurs

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Kuala Lumpur (May,31)Special Dialogue at Bank Negara on improving access & building capacity to micro credit by small and micro Indian entrepreneurs

Mr Sivakumar (MIBA President) and Dato Mohan Krishan (NIE) lead a small delegation to Bank Negara Development Finance & Enterprise Department on May 30, 2012 for a discussion on improving access and building capacity for micro Indian entrepreneurs.

Major concerns of Indian entrepreneurs

It was clearly established that certain sections of entrepreneurs are facing tremendous challenges towards accessing finance. While the Federal government has instituted many different programs, this issue continues to inhibit the small and micro players in the market. Access is a major issue and often cited are the non-bankable circumstances of the borrowers who are in desperate need for capital

These concerns were articulated by both the Malaysian Indian Business Association and the National Indian Entrepreneurs in an appeal for a second chance program especially those entrepreneurs with non-performing loans or have been black listed.

The discussion was moderated by Puan Kamisah Abd Kadir, Deputy Director of the Department who advised all parties concern towards capacity building though SME corp and also seek advice through AKPK the credit counselling and debt management agency. In addition she highlighted the Small Debt Resolution Scheme (SDRS) which was another vehicle established by Bank Negara.

The meeting was enriched by information dissemination of the support services especially capability building to enable businesses to a point of readiness for access micro loans of below RM50,000. These programs were highlighted by SME Corp Director for Business advisory and support division, Mr Amin Abdullah

Mr Azman Hasim, the General Manager (Operations) of AKPK shared of the services they provide including debt counselling and management. In addition their staff conducts financial literacy programs at the grassroots.

Also present at the discussion was Datuk A.Vaithilingam (Former Hindu Sangam), Datuk Dr Denison Jayasooria (Institute of Ethnic Studies, UKM), Dr Sivamoorthy (Miba advisor) & Mr M.Mohan (Miba banking consultant).

Follow Up initiatives

At the meeting both MIBA and NIE agreed to identify 100 Indian entrepreneurs and seek to channel them through SME corp, AKPK and SDRS within the next 3 months. These experiences will be documented to clearly identify the actual reasons for the hurdles in accessing the available financing initiatives.

In addition the two business associations have agreed to organise a core training of trainers program and four grassroots awareness programs in a small town outside the state capital of Penang, Perak, KL-Selangor & Johore in order to link the grassroots Indian entrepreneur with the relevant agency providing the service.

Both Mr Sivakumar and Dato Mohan agreed to liaise with these agencies and return to a review meeting in three to four months to review the findings from the ground. Puan Kamisah Abd Kadir agreed to meet them to review the findings and chart further action plans to improving access and in building capacity of small and micro entrepreneurs.