Batswana Urged To Utilise Chema Chema Responsibly

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Small Medium Enterprises (SMMEs) aspiring go get short loans through the government’s Chema Chema funding have been urged to responsibly use the money and re-pay the short loans on the stipulated time in order to ensure that other businesses are able to benefit as well.

Chema Chema Fund as a revolving credit fund for the informal sector is part of the government’s efforts to address the challenge of access to funding by the informal sector.

The fund is designed to enable financial inclusion and promote growth through provision of short loans. The initiative which has been awarded a total amount of P500 million is administered by Local Entrepreneur Authority (LEA) and Citizen Entrepreneurial Development Agency (CEDA).

This was said by Vice President Slumber Tsogwane when launching the Chema Chema fund in Maun recently. He indicated that by responsibly using and paying back the short loans SMMEs can apply for a subsequent short loan for further development of their businesses.

“Kindly use the fund responsibly so that at the end of the year, the results are positive to ensure that there is continued support of the informal SMME sector,” Tsogwane said.

Tsogwane highlighted that the fund loans cover start-up costs, working capital financing and purchase of key business equipment or small scale machinery giving an instance of a Cool Time manufacturing machine.

He added that the fund offers an opportunity for SMMEs to pursue value chain development in different sectors adding that all existing informal business ideas are eligible to be funded. He emphasised that there are no priority sectors as all viable business ideas will be funded accordingly.

Breaking down the fund guidelines, CEDA CEO Thabo Thamane explained that eligible candidates were those earning below taxable income of P48 000 per annum, (P4 000 and below per month).

He stated that the businesses have to first register with LEA who would then conduct an interview on individuals or groups wishing to secure a loan to determine their eligibility as well as ensuring that necessary documents are submitted.

Thamane further noted that once a loan has been approved by CEDA, the recipient will undergo a week’s long capacitation on business management and growth strategies which will be offered for free. He indicated that an insurance cover will be needed for the loan to ensure that when one passes on the loan will be covered by the insurance.

“The fund will be administered autonomously for all districts instead of being split according to districts,”  Thamane said.

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