The Finance Ministry announced it is extending the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) till March 31, 2022, or till guarantees for an amount of Rs 4.5 lakh crore are issued under the scheme, whichever is earlier. Additionally, the last date of disbursement under the scheme has been extended to June 30 next year.
ECLGS ever since it was launched has extended relief to over 1.15 crore MSMEs and businesses. The scheme strives to support eligible businesses under duress due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"As on 24th September 2021, loans sanctioned have crossed Rs. 2.86 lakh crore under the Scheme and out of total guarantees issued, about 95% of the guarantees issued are for loans sanctioned to Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises," the release stated.
Additionally, the ministry announced a series of modifications under the scheme aimed at ensuring businesses impacted by the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic get enhanced free liquidity. Further, assisting them ahead of the busy festive season.
The ministry stated that businesses who have not availed assistance under ECLGS previously would be able to avail credit support of up to 30 per cent of their credit outstanding as on March 31, this year. Existing ECLGS borrowers would be eligible for additional credit support of up to 10 per cent of total credit outstanding as of February 29 or March 31, whichever is higher.
The extension announced on Wednesday is the fifth extension since it was inaugurated in May, last year. It was first given an extension in October last year to November, followed by March 2021 and then to June 2021 and September this year. More sectors and markets were included in each expansion.