As the fourth largest coconut-producing country in the world, Sri Lanka’s coconut industry is a key contributor towards Sri Lanka’s economy.
As part of its efforts to develop Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and build sustainable businesses, Union Bank through the “Kapruka Ayojana” Credit Line continues to uplift and support coconut cultivators with funding and advisory. SMEs/Coconut Growers can obtain loans up to Rs. 3.0Mn through this loan scheme for various development activities.
Union Bank’s Chief Manager, Development Financing & Business Revival/Rehabilitation, Janaka Edirisinghe said, “Coconut is a multipurpose perennial crop and farmers have to wait at least five to seven years to earn a proper yield. Therefore, farmers are hesitant to take loans for cultivation activities. Hence “Kapruka Ayojana” Credit Scheme assists farmers by providing loans up to Rs.3.0Mn with a very attractive fixed interest rate of 8% p.a.”.
The “Kapruka” credit scheme provides financial guidance towards the realisation of higher productivity and steady income by ensuring optimum utilisation of available resources in the land, through scientifically developed individual farming plans.
The Bank provides loans for many development activities of coconut estates including, new planting, replanting & rehabilitation of coconut, inter-cropping, animal husbandry projects & purchase of machinery/equipment. The cultivators have up to five years period for the repayment of the loans which includes a grace period of 12 months. Further, the coconut cultivators are entitled to a partial interest reimbursement from the Coconut Cultivation Board which will further reduce their financial costs.
Union Bank over 25 years has supported the growth of SME businesses, providing funding and access to special grants including the Tea Smallholder Credit Line (TSHCL) and customized schemes for women entrepreneurs.