USAID grants $35 loan to accelerate access to trade credit finance for Tunisian SMEs
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID), launched a $35 million loan financing program for Tunisian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), in collaboration with the Arab Tunisian Bank (ATB), and the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC).
The program will increase and accelerate access to trade credit for SMEs which is crucial for their success. The partnership between the DFC, USAID and ATB will increase access to loans to regions and borrowers who cannot easily access to bank loans.
The United States government is committed to supporting the success of small Tunisian businesses, greater economic inclusion, and job creation in the private sector. As access to finance is crucial for the prosperity of Tunisian small businesses, this partnership between USAID, ATB and DFC will help increase access to loans to regions and borrowers who cannot easily access loans.
To date, the US government, through USAID, has helped approximately 30,000 small businesses increase their sales and exports to TND 1.5 billion, access approximately TND 500 million in new credit, and create more than 40,000 jobs.
Donald Blome, the United States Ambassador to Tunisia said, “In a context of difficult economic situation in Tunisia, this initiative will facilitate the granting of 35 million dollars of loans granted by the ATB to small businesses throughout Tunisia, particularly targeting underserved regions. This partnership demonstrates the U.S. government's willingness to support Tunisia by mobilizing private capital resources for the benefit of small businesses and demonstrates our commitment to the growth and success of the Tunisian private sector."
The mission of ATB is to contribute to the economic and financial development of Tunisia by offering diversified and quality services. ATB has a network of 134 branches and employs more than 1,400 people. The bank developed a new business strategy, invested in human capital and growing their customer base, and implemented a rigorous process to expand and diversify its portfolio.
Rjiba, CEO of ATB said, “USAID and DFC's SME Loan Program strengthens ATB's ability to finance SMEs, allowing us to increase our support for small businesses in Tunisia. We also pay particular attention to women entrepreneurs in order to contribute effectively to better economic inclusion in the country.”
The SME market is growing rapidly and the ATB has partnered with USAID and the DFC to expand SME lending across the country. The DFC is also committed to increasing access to finance for SMEs across Tunisia and in underserved regions.