The Government of Lao PDR has received funding from the World Bank Group for the Small and Medium Enterprises Access to Finance Project. The objective of the Project is to provide long-term funding sources for commercial banks to provide long-term credit to small and medium enterprises (SMEs). This will be achieved by increasing the supply of long-term finance provided by commercial banks and by strengthening the capability of Department of SME Promotion, within the Ministry of Industry and Commerce to formulate and implement public policies that promote access to finance for SMEs. The Project includes two components:
(i) A Line of Credit channelled through Participating Financial Intermediaries (PFIs) for on-lending to SMEs
(ii) Technical Assistance for Department of SME Promotion, PFIs and SMEs.
Under the phase I of the TA, a team of consultants assisted the PFIs and other banks in capacity building through a series of trainings and one-to-one interactions with senior management. This phase has now been completed successfully. Based on the foundations laid to date, the DOSMEP wishes to continue its support to the financial service providers in parallel to the support provided in capacity building on the demand side.
Phase II supports 3 PFIs of the access to finance project in developing a fully-fledged SME banking business strategy.