UAE’s EDB unveils post-COVID acceleration initiative to support SMEs

By Shilpa Annie Joseph, Official Reporter
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Emirates Development Bank (EDB), the fully-owned UAE Federal Government financial entity, has launched ‘Sanad’, a post-COVID acceleration initiative, in order to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

The new initiative is in line with the UAE’s National Strategy and series of initiatives to support the SMEs in the UAE and accelerate their post-COVID economic growth.

The $27 million (AED100 million) worth initiative intends to extend quick, easy-to-access, and flexible loans to Emirati-owned and managed businesses looking to accelerate the growth of their businesses post the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ahmed Mohamed Al Naqbi
Ahmed Mohamed Al Naqbi

“The launch of ‘Sanad’ is in line with the UAE’s leadership vision to boost the SME ecosystem and help the overall economic acceleration post-COVID. Our new $27 million (AED100 million) initiative offers flexible liquidity support to Emirati-owned and managed SMEs with a growth outlook post the pandemic. Our new ‘Sanad’ initiative is in line with the country’s economic diversification strategy and part of the bank’s efforts to drive industrial growth and modernization in the country in the next 50 years and beyond. EDB is the only bank in the UAE to provide such first-of-its-kind quick, easy-to-access, and flexible liquidity support to Emirati-owned and managed SMEs post-COVID. Moreover, we have designed a suite of expert financial services to enable Emirati-owned and managed businesses to accelerate their growth post the pandemic.”

According to the statement, EDB offers the most competitive interest rates in the market for both secured and unsecured loan categories. “The loans, to be offered at a starting rate of 5.99 percent per annum on reducing balance basis, seeks to enable Emirati businesses looking to accelerate their economic growth post-COVID,” the statement said.

Furthermore, EDB stated that “the loan requests will be processed within five working days through a hassle-free process making the new initiative a quick, convenient, and flexible platform.” The credit assessment of the SMEs will be based primarily on their 2019 financials (pre-COVID) with relaxed norms on evaluation of 2020-2021 financial performance.

Related: UAE’s EDB & DIB unite to launch credit guarantee scheme for SMEs