Dubai: Abu Dhabi’s biggest bank will offer financial facilities of up to $100 million (Dh367.3 million) to Dubai small and medium enterprises (SMEs), a move that is expected to benefit 1,000 companies in the emirate, the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry announced yesterday.
The chamber has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) to provide financial services to SMEs in the emirate, offering competitive rates and tariffs as well as granting loans within three working days. “The signing of this agreement with NBAD to support the financing of SMEs is very timely as the sector is underserved by the financial services industry and this partnership will allow us to be accessible to small businesses while providing liquidity to the sector drive for the overall growth of entrepreneurship in the emirate,” said Hamad Bu Amim, Director-General of the DCCI.
“The service can benefit our members who reached more than 130,000 by the end of January 2012. Initially, during the first year of its launch, the scheme is expected to benefit more than 1,000 companies belonging to Dubai Chamber members.”
He said 98 per cent of chamber members fall into the category of SMEs in terms of turnover and number of employees.
Bu Amim said SMEs make up more than 90 per cent of businesses in Dubai but the UAE’s bank lending of 3.85 per cent to SMEs was among the lowest in the world, despite the fact the sector makes up 30-35 per cent of GDP.
“Small and medium-sized entrepreneurs are a major contributor to economic growth in any economy,” said Saif Al Shehhi, NBAD’s senior general manager of Domestic Banking.