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Minister Pat Breen TD announces reduction of 50% in cost of SME Credit Guarantee Scheme premium

  • Part of the Government’s Brexit supports, the reduction to 0.5% in premium cost will support SMEs in addressing challenges to growth and productivity.

Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection, Pat Breen TD today announced the reduction of the premium paid by users of the SME Credit Guarantee Scheme from 1% to 0.5%. The reduction is part of the suite of Government measures to support SMEs as they prepare for Brexit.   

The Credit Guarantee Scheme is an important Government support which assists viable SMEs, which under normal lending criteria are unable to borrow from their bank, in accessing credit from commercial lenders that are part of the scheme. The Scheme’s key features include facilities of €10,000 up to €1,000,000 for terms of up to 7 years. The scheme covers term loans, demand loans and performance bonds.

Launching the new premium rate today (July 16th) Minister Breen said:

Availability of credit is the lifeblood of all small businesses and the Credit Guarantee Scheme plays a vital role in making in easier for SMEs to access the finance they need.  The scheme continues to expand its reach across all regions of the country and I am confident that the reduction of 50% in the rate applied to the premium will further encourage interest among SMEs.

He added:

It is critical to Ireland’s continued economic growth that our almost 250,000 SMEs are encouraged and facilitated to reach their full potential. The Government is committed to helping SMEs to overcome obstacles to growth and productivity and with Brexit approaching, this is more important than ever. Access to adequate credit facilities remains a major barrier in this regard.

The Scheme is operated on behalf of the Department by the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI) and is available from the participating banks.

Minister Breen concluded: 

I would encourage all SME operators seeking to grow and develop their businesses to consider the benefits of the Credit Guarantee Scheme.