The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a loan worth $100 million for financial support of small businesses in Uzbekistan, ADB said in a message July 1.
"Small businesses contribute over 50 percent of Uzbekistan's GDP and 80 percent of employment but their access to finance, particularly in rural areas, is hampered by limited services and a range of other obstacles," said the message.
The loan will be refinanced by four financial institutions: Davr Bank, Hamkorbank, Ipak Yuli Bank and leasing company UzbekLeasing International A.O.
The loan will help meet a growing demand for credit and leases from small businesses and entrepreneurs, according to the message. The funds will be lent to small businesses at market-based rates. To ensure the participating financial institutions can service a larger range of businesses, the maximum single subloan amount has been set at $300,000, three times the size of the subloan limit set under a previous ADB loan. In addition, to ensure a broad gender and geographical spread, the project aims to extend at least 20 percent of all eligible loans to women-owned businesses, and at least 60 percent to small businesses outside Tashkent.
The project will be implemented over 5 years with an estimated completion date of late December 2021.
Uzbekistan is an ADB member since 1995.
ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration.