Ajman Bank, one of the Shariah compliant banks in the UAE has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Emirates Development Bank [EDB], a key financial enabler of the country’s economic diversification and industrial transformation agenda, to offer credit guarantee and co-lending for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises [SMEs] in the UAE.
The MoU with Ajman Bank falls within the scope of EDB’s commitment to boost the SME ecosystem and the industrial sector in the UAE and thus increase its contribution to the country’s GDP. The EDB-Ajman Bank MoU focuses on offering strategic financing solutions to SMEs – one of the economic pillars of the UAE.
Representing the two parties, the agreement was signed by Mr. Mohamed Amiri, Chief Executive Officer of Ajman Bank and Mr. Ahmed Mohamed Al Naqbi, Chief Executive Officer of EDB.
As part of the MoU, EDB will provide credit guarantee and/ or co-lending program to the Ajman Bank’s SME customers. Ajman Bank will offer up to AED 10 million financing to a SME, and 50% of the facility amount will be either guaranteed or co-lent by EDB. The collaboration also aims to support UAE citizens in the startup journey by offering financing facilities of up to AED 1 million, wherein 60% is guaranteed or co-lent by EDB.
The credit guarantee and co-lending program is part of a robust platform that EDB has worked out with Ajman Bank to increase their financial lending for the SME segment, with focus on the priority industrial sectors — manufacturing, healthcare, infrastructure, food security and technology.
Speaking about the MoU, Mohamed Amiri said: “Access to finance is vital for the growth of business. We believe as part of this MoU more businesses especially the small and medium size enterprizes in the UAE will have access to the benefits of our unique financial products and services that will contribute to boost the country’s development. Our collaboration with the Emirates Development Bank will bring together our collective resources and comes at a decisive moment for economic recovery after the pandemic which is ultimately aimed at helping the business community. Moving forward we will continue to expand on the range of solutions to accelerate growth.”
Commenting on the agreement, Ahmed Mohamed Al Naqbi, said: “The increased financial accessibility to the SMEs – the backbone of the country’s economy – will not only help them develop and grow their business but also boost their contribution to UAE’s non-oil GDP. Emirates Development Bank is committed to bridging the funding gap for SMEs operating in key sectors and as part of this endeavour, we are pleased to work closely with Ajman Bank. Together, we aim to support companies and entrepreneurs to have access to wider financing options, which will serve the country’s efforts of building a knowledge-based economy and contribute to sustainable economic development.”
The MoU with Ajman Bank is aligned with EDB’s recently-unveiled strategy, offering direct and indirect lending for SMEs (Supply Chain, Project and Long-term Finance), an investment arm for startups and SMEs (accelerator, equity finance, business growth fund) as well as business advisory services for entrepreneurs, startups and small companies (coaching, consulting, mentoring, market research).