DFC, Sida, USAID to support Georgia’s private sector to recover from COVID-19 pandemic
BAKU, Azerbaijan, Nov. 13
By Tamilla Mammadova – Trend:
The Development Finance Corporation (DFC), the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and Georgian JSC MFO Crystal (Crystal) jointly announced a loan guarantee program to support Georgia’s private sector to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, Trend reports via Georgian media.
The program, facilitated by USAID, will allow Crystal to issue $15 million in US and Swedish-guaranteed loans to more than 5,000 Georgian micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs).
The initiative represents Crystal’s first engagement in a loan guarantee program with international donor organizations. The large-scale guarantee will allow Crystal to diversify its offering of financial products to meet the complex needs of Georgian MSMEs during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. Crystal will focus on lending to underserved borrower groups including women-owned business, startups, and businesses located outside of major urban centers, stimulating economic growth in Georgia’s regions.
The guarantee has a tenure of eight years, acting as both a rapid response mechanism to help Georgian businesses return to growth amidst the disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic and a long-term partnership between the US and Swedish governments and Crystal to support enterprise-led development in Georgia.
"This new partnership in form of $15 million loan guarantee program will further enhance our support of micro and small businesses with innovative financial products and advisory services. This transaction also emphasizes continued international belief in Georgia’s microfinance sector during the COVID-19 pandemic,“ Crystal CEO Ilia Revia said.
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