Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif today reviewed the progress on youth business loan scheme in a meeting held at the NBP Headquarters and gave directions to soften up conditions for guarantors of loans so that maximum number of youth could benefit from the scheme. He also emphasized that all barriers should be removed to ensure easy and smooth processing of applications for loans and their disbursement.
The Prime Minister was given a detailed briefing on the scheme with special emphasis on the receipt of applications and their scrutiny. He directed that the implementation of the scheme rules should be in a manner that it facilitates the applicants. He directed the President NBP to personally supervise the scheme.
The issue of the guarantors was discussed in detail during the meeting. The Prime Minister was informed that in order to facilitate the applicants, three categories of guarantors have been identified: firstly a Grade-15 or above Government Officer, secondly any civilian person having an amount of net worth of 1.5 times the amount of loan applied for and thirdly if a person has a running business and wants to expand it, he can be his own guarantor if he has net worth of 1.5 times the loan amount in National Bank or any other bank from where the loan is disbursed. Prime Minister approved the additional category of combined guarantors i.e. a single applicant would now be able to provide combined guarantee of more than one guarantor for his loan.
The Prime Minister said that banks should facilitate the applicants and the service delivery mechanism should be improved based upon the valuable suggestions / feedback received from the public. The standard of services for these applicants should be the same as given to the commercial borrowers. He advised the bank officers working on the loan scheme to consider it as service to the nation.
The Prime Minister emphasized upon merit and transparency in the scheme so that only the deserving and genuine persons could get the loan. He said that the Government wants to provide various opportunities to the youth including skilled education, trainings, employment and scholarships so that they could contribute positively in all fields. He said that the youth are showing great interest in the Business Loan Scheme which is evident from millions of downloads of pre-feasibility studies and forms available on SMEDA website.
The meeting was attended by Governor Sindh, Dr. Eshrat-ul-Ebad Khan, Federal Information Minister, Senator Pervaiz Rashid, Minister Defence Khawaja Muhammad Asif, Minister Interior Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan and President National Bank of Pakistan (NBP).