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Relief for microcredit victims in North and North Central Provinces

On the eve of elections the government is raising the credit limit for state-run microcredit providers and lowering interest rates, a statement from the Ministry of Finance said.

The credit limits for these has now been raised from Rs. 40,000 to Rs. 60,000 and interest rates lowered from 14 per cent to 9 per cent the Ministry said.

This scheme will be available in the Northern and North Central Provinces in six districts.

The government believes that the highest number of people who have fallen victim to high-interest micro-credit schemes are in these two provinces.

The government has allocated Rs 292 million for the Northern Province and 250 million for the North Central Province.

The loans will be disbursed through Cooperative Rural banks, Thrift societies and other smaller entities.

The Ministry said that there are around 14,000 people who are struggling with these loans in the North Central Province.

People struggling to repay microcredit loans have been the subject of many news stories and features. At least 170 people have taken their own lives because they were unable to pay the loans.

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