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For the financial year 2009/10 some $26 million was disbursed from the Self Start Fund to the small and micro enterprises (SMEs) sector.
A ministerial report tabled recently in the House of Representatives said the Fund facilitated business loans to 113 entrepreneurs within the SME sector, with the average loan size being $200,000.
Other achievements include creation/preservation of approximately 441 jobs; commencement of rebranding exercise with a committee redefining and repackaging the products and services of the Self Start Fund; and the commencement of work to identify specific communities for which the Self Start Fund will be providing loan financing to micro enterprises.
Priority targets for the 2010/11 included the disbursement of $45 million to the SME sector; provision of working capital and fixed assets loans to approximately 300 entrepreneurs; develop a cadre of business development officers, islandwide; and to create or preserve approximately 600 jobs within the SME sector.
The Self Start Fund was established to address the needs of persons who were either graduates from the secondary school system or approved government training programmes, and who are interested in starting small businesses or expanding the operations of existing small or micro enterprises. The Fund assists its target group through the provision of credit.