SMALL scale gold miners can secure Bank of Tanzania (BoT) loan guarantee of up to 500m/- through the registered commercial banks in the country, the central bank announced here yesterday.
BoT Mwanza Branch Assistant Manager, Banking, Melchiades Rutayebesibwa told the ‘Daily News’ here yesterday that through the Small and Medium Enterprises Credit Guarantee Scheme (SME-CGS), the central bank provides 50 per cent guarantee for up to five-year loans.
“Small scale enterprises and small scale miners can use this scheme to get guarantee for loans from commercial banks under the Banks and Financial Institutions, Act of 2006,” Rutayebesibwa said.
He said BoT’s foundation will charge the financial institutions one per cent of the guaranteed loans.
BOT is participating in the ongoing second Mine- Expo exhibitions at Kalangalala grounds in Geita town to educate mining stakeholders on how to access its services, including securing loan guarantees from the lender of last resort.
Asked about the scheme prerequisites in providing the loan guarantees, the assistant manager said small scale miners are supposed to channel their financial plans to their respective banks or any registered financial institution for review.
“After reviewing the loanapplicant financial plans and satisfied on the basis of financial viability, banks or financial institutions will forward the applications to the Small and Medium Enterprises Credit Guarantee Scheme,” he said.
The official added that the central bank has also decided to participate in the exhibition to educate miners on how they can invest their earnings through buying BoT’s treasury bonds.
Treasury bills or bonds are being primarily bought at central bank’s primary market and auctioned on every Wednesday.
“We advise small scale miners that if they have surplus or profit to invest in government treasury bonds for short or long terms because such kind of investment is reliable,” he said.
SME-CGS was established purposely to enable entrepreneurs to access loans under agency agreement that involves BoT and the government of Tanzania.
BoT Mwanza Branch Official Laila Kisombe advised small scale miners to purchase machines worth between 5m/- and 500m/- under the scheme.