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Tuesday, Aug 03, 2004

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APSFC awareness campaign shows results

Our Bureau

Visakhapatnam , Aug. 2

THE Andhra Pradesh State Financial Corporation (APSFC), now on a drive to promote awareness about its schemes among entrepreneurs and give on-the-spot sanctions, has received proposals worth Rs 47 crore from Visakhapatnam, Vizianagaram and Srikakulam districts.

Mr M. Gopalakrishna, Chairman of the corporation, said at a press meet here on Monday that some of the proposals had been cleared on the spot and the rest would be cleared later after documentation. He said the campaign had started in the last week of July and at the two earlier seminars in Hyderabad and Vijayawada proposals worth Rs 138 crore and Rs 47 crore had been received, respectively.

He said similar seminars would be held in Tirupati, Rajahmundry and other places, and a final meeting in Hyderabad on August 16.

"The APSFC, adjudged the best in the country for the third year in succession in all aspects (loan sanction, disbursement and recovery), is going all out to help entrepreneurs by removing all bottlenecks," he said.

Mr Gopalakrishna said the Union Government had set up a Rs 10,000-crore SME (small and medium enterprises) fund and the corporation would draw tap it to finance projects in the State. "In the past, we could not finance the bigger projects due to fund constraints. Now, we can do so and we are also planning to take up joint financing along with SIDBI," he said.

He said the APSFC was out of the red and it had earned a profit of Rs 10 crore last year. It was also accepting deposits by offering a higher interest rate than the banks (6 per cent to 7 per cent) and it had so far got Rs 35 crore. "We want to double the deposits during the current financial year," he added.

The Chairman said the corporation was making all attempts to retire the high-cost borrowings taken in the past and further improve its financial position.

"The situation is improving in the State and now we find that the first generation entrepreneurs are better informed than in the past. Still, the sickness rate in the State is as high as anywhere else in the country. We are trying to bring it down," he said.

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