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Press Release 20 January 2020

HKAB Welcomes More Support Measures Introduced Under SME Coordination Mechanism

(20 January 2020) The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA), the banking industry and the Hong Kong Mortgage Insurance Limited (HKMCI) today held the second meeting under the Banking Sector SME Lending Coordination Mechanism, in order to strengthen support for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The meeting followed up on the progress of the measures proposed at the first meeting, as well as discussed other support measures for SMEs. 

The banking industry expressed great support to the measures proposed at the first meeting. Solid progress has been made on making good use of the countercyclical buffer (CCyB) capital released by the HKMA earlier to support SMEs and assist companies in extending and restructuring their repayment period, etc. 

To provide SMEs with timely assistance, the banking industry also backs SMEs with other relief measures, including launching the 90% Guarantee Product in coordination with the HKMCI, and processing applications for the 80% Guarantee Product in a more flexible manner. Banks will also explore the introduction of more concessionary service fees to help SMEs reduce expenses and the launch of various loan products to support SMEs. In addition, the banking industry will proactively coordinate with the HKMA in organising briefing sessions to help SMEs strengthen their understanding of banks' lending policies. 

Ann Kung Yeung Yun-chi, Acting Chairperson of the HKAB says, "SMEs serve as a key economic pillar in Hong Kong. The banking industry understands the challenges SMEs are facing in their operation given the current economic environment. We have remained in close communication with SMEs and have been actively supporting them with various measures in order to help SMEs rise to the current challenges. We are delighted to see that solid progress has been made on the measures proposed at the first meeting of the Banking Sector SME Lending Coordination Mechanism. Going forward, the banking industry will continue to work together under the coordination mechanism to support the development of SMEs by considering and introducing more financing services and arrangements that serve the needs of SMEs." 

The Hong Kong Association of Banks
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