Availability of credit to small businesses remains a pressing problem for the banking system and the economy as a whole. Low loan rates and government support programmes were the main drivers of the SME-lending segment in 2018. As part of the federal project Expansion of access for SMEs to financial resources, including preferential financing, a number of programmes for preferential lending for SMEs were re-launched. Public funding is available at subsidized interest rates and the list of authorized banks is being extended. Are entrepreneurs well-informed about the availability of subsidies and what their key needs are? Notwithstanding the large quantity of public funds and programmes currently in operation, their ability to target the correct recipients and the efficiency of resource allocation remains questionable. The team Entrepreneurs and the team Financiers will discuss availability of small business financing, as well as the scope and reach of state support programmes for SMEs. The discussion will touch upon the topical issues of account blocking and blacklisting, as well as the effectiveness of support programmes.
Key topics to be addressed in the session are:
• How can the transparency of blacklisting processes be increased and losses from account blocking reduced?
• Can the rates of the loans available to SMEs be low and the SME lending grow rapidly at the same time?
• How effective are support programmes and are businesses aware of the support available to them? How widespread is the practice of SMEs receiving funds?
There are many potential investors among participants at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum. The heads of four completely different Russian regions discuss their expectations for the event and what they have to offer business.