The subsidiary in Cameroon of the Gabonese banking group BGFI signed, on September 1st, 2020, an agreement with the local government to provide support to SMEs in the country impacted by the Covid-19 crisis. The bank says it has made available a financing line of 10 billion CFA francs to boost the resumption of activities with the technical support of the Ministry of Finance.
Depending on certain eligibility criteria (sector of activity, turnover...) it will be a question of providing the SMEs selected with the support they lack in these times of crisis. "The Covid-19 pandemic has impacted us all to varying degrees and made us realize how much we depend on each other. We cannot therefore remain deaf to the requests of the different actors of our value chain", said the CEO of BGFI Cameroon, Abakal Mahamat (photo).
According to the survey report of the Groupement inter-patronal du Cameroun (Gicam) published last April, the proportion of SMEs who said they were negatively affected by the pandemic was 72%, for losses of up to 80%. At BGFI, it was felt that it was necessary to intervene quickly to limit the damage by preserving jobs and safeguarding production tools.
The Cameroonian Minister of Finance who represented the government expressed his satisfaction at the end of the signing ceremony. "I expressed to the Director General our satisfaction that BGFI is resolutely on the side of the government in the struggle that we know. The support we have received from BGFI is very important at a time when the Head of State is asking us to develop a recovery plan," said Louis Paul Motaze.
The contours of this agreement have not been specified. At BGFI, we believe that the initiative aims to support a segment of the economy that is fragile and in need of assistance. "My teams will work with those of the Ministry of Finance to ensure that the conditions for these SMEs are as least restrictive as possible to benefit from this refinancing line," said Abakal Mahamat.