LDB launches ‘Siyapath Pubuduwa’ loan scheme

Monday, 23 March 2015 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

By Waruni Paranagamage Lankaputhra Development Bank (LDB) last week introduced ‘Siyapath Pubuduwa’, a specific loan scheme for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) and youth. The loan scheme has been introduced in conjunction with the Government’s 100-day program, which is set to create 1,000 entrepreneurs. Siyapath Pubuduwa provides those from the SME sector with a loan of Rs. 500,000 at 13% annual interest rate. The loans will be given to those involved in the apparel industry and its related fields, as well as the agriculture and fisheries industries, engineering services, hotels and related services, beauty culture, electrical equipment repair, plumbing and self- employment. Along with the program, 100 handpicked entrepreneurs in the Colombo District will be offered loans while children of State and private sector employees will be provided loans to purchase laptops at reduced interest rates. LDB Chairman K.H. Lasantha Goonawardena said that the role of the bank was to enhance the SME sector in the county by increasing loan facilities to entrepreneurs. LDB provides attractive interest rates for savings and a high interest rate for senior citizens’ fixed deposits. In addition, the bank also offers microfinance loans, interest-free payments, pawning services, a ‘Sandaliya’ savings account for women and a ‘Shasthree’ higher educational loan scheme specially designed for the benefit of students interested in obtaining locally and internationally- recognised academic and professional qualifications. LDB has set up successful branches in the Colombo, Hambantota, Polonnaruwa, Kandy, Kegalle, Wennappuwa, Batticaloa and Trincomalee districts. The management is mulling plans to expand the branch network in the future. One of the key aspects of this is that the new branches will only be opened if a better service can be offered to customers in a particular district. Pix by Shehan Gunasekara

 LDB reduces bad debt to 41%

  By Waruni Paranagamage Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake yesterday asserted that the Government could recover 8% of bad debt of Lankaputhra Development Bank (LDB) through the support of the newly appointed administration of the bank. Speaking at the launch of the LDB ‘Siyapath Pubuduwa’ loan scheme, Minister Karunanayake said that the bank had reduced bad debt from 48.9% to 41% within the last two weeks. He said that although the bank was established in 2006 to serve Small and Medium Entrepreneurs (SMEs), it had more or less disbursed loans to large-scale business entrepreneurs. He said: “With the appointment of the new administration, we were able to increase the number of loan disbursements to SMEs.” LDB was established under Act No. 17 of 1982 to cater to the development of the agricultural and industrial sectors of the rural economy. The bank seeks to help rural folk from the construction, agriculture and industrial sectors by channelling finances toward them as well as providing them with advice and guidance.