China offers targeted financing support for virus-hit small firms
China has stepped up targeted financing support for epidemic-stricken small and micro-enterprises, the country's banking regulator said Friday.
Banks have offered more credit loans to such firms, especially those in sectors hit hardest by the epidemic and in Hubei Province, said Li Junfeng, an official with the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission.
Small firms in the sectors of farming, breeding, wholesale, retail, catering, logistics and tourism bear the brunt of the novel coronavirus outbreak and are more likely to suffer tight cash flows and difficulties in loan repayment, according to Li.
Procedures are streamlined for small firms in applying for loans and relending funds, said Li. Also, a "green channel" has been established to grant emergency loans to firms participating in epidemic control.
Financial institutions are also encouraged to make flexible repayment arrangements for cash-strapped small firms, Li said.
Overall financing costs of inclusive financing services for small businesses will be lowered by at least 0.5 percentage points this year, according to Li.