The Fiji Development Bank has reviewed the Export Credit Facility (ECF), an initiative geared towards assisting export oriented businesses that fall under government’s priority sectors for economic development.
FDB acting chief executive officer Nafitalai Cakacaka highlighted that the reason for the review was the under-utilisation of the facility.
“We have reviewed the facility as there has been no movement in the allocation of funds put aside for this facility. We believe that some of the initial terms of the loan facility may have been counterproductive for exporters so we are making the necessary amendments,” said Mr. Cakacaka.
In 2008 the bank received a grant of $1.5M from the Ministry of Industry and Trade to administer a loan product that would assist in the priority sectors of agriculture, forestry, marine products, mineral water products, ICT and audio visual.
ECF fund can assist new and existing exporters in raising short term working capital requirements for exporting.
“This facility is very suitable for exporters. When products are exported, payments are not received up front as the process takes time. ECF provides fast money for meeting the exporting costs and allowing borrowers to repay these once proceeds are received from their exports.”
Some of the amendments to the facility include;
– Increase in the loan term from 6 months to 1 year;
– Increase in maximum loan amount to $500,000 from $200,000
– Funds can be used as working capital for equipment purchases and expenses related to export; financing of both tangible and intangible assets in the ICT and Audio/Visual sectors. Tangible assets refer to those that provide/facilitate an enabling environment in the production of a movie or documentary product for export for example copyrights and training.
“These are some of the features that have been agreed to with the Ministry of Industry and Trade which we hope will improve the attractiveness of this product.”
The revised ECF will be effective from 1 May 2014.