JIS News

Managing Director at the Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ), Milverton Reynolds has said that funding is available for viable tourism projects under the DBJ/Scotia Bank Loan Scheme.
“Jamaica’s tourism product is known worldwide and the new Minister of Tourism is hoping to receive in excess of 3 million visitors this coming year,”Mr. Reynolds said. He was speaking at the opening of Opportunities Jamaica 07, which was held at the Sunset Jamaica Grande Resort in Ocho Rios, St. Ann.
Through this joint programme, he said, small hotel owners could access funds to renovate and refurbish at low rates.
“For these small hotels and villas to qualify, they must have a minimum of 10 and up to 100 rooms,” he informed, adding that the operators should have less than 150 employees and an annual revenue of $300 million or less.
Mr. Reynolds said that the interest rate on the loan was 8 per cent and that it was repayable over seven years.
“Borrowers are required to have an equity of 20 per cent and can access a minimum of $2 million and a maximum of $15 million,” he pointed out.
The Managing Director said that in January of this year, the DBJ entered into an agreement with the National Insurance Fund (NIF) and secured $250 million to provide funding for small and medium enterprises, employing no more than 50 persons.
The funds available under this facility, he said, were specifically for working capital and fixed asset purchases, among other purposes.
“Interest rate is at 7.875 per cent on the reducing balance and loan amounts range from $100,000 to $5 million. The repayment period is up to 4 years,” he said, informing that borrowers could access funds through the network of the National People’s Co-operative Bank (NPCB).
He further informed that in November, some 117 loans totalling $202.7 million were approved under the programme.
“We hope to access additional funds from this source as there is a great demand for this funding,” he said. Mr. Reynolds appealed to operators of small and medium size enterprises, especially those operators of small hotels and villas, to get on board this programme and access the funds that were made available to assist them in the development of their businesses.

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