Written answers

Thursday, 7 November 2019

Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation

Brexit Supports

Photo of Robert TroyRobert Troy (Longford-Westmeath, Fianna Fail)
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120. To ask the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the number of approved applicants to the Brexit loan scheme that have or have not drawn down funding in the four-month eligibility period in tabular form. [46003/19]

Photo of Heather HumphreysHeather Humphreys (Cavan-Monaghan, Fine Gael)
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The Brexit Loan Scheme provides affordable working capital to eligible businesses with up to 499 employees that are or will be Brexit impacted and which meet the scheme criteria. The €23 million exchequer funding announced in the 2018 Budget (€14 million from my Department and €9 million from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine) has been leveraged to provide a fund of up to €300 million over the lifetime of the scheme.

The scheme features a two-stage application process. First, businesses must apply to the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI) to confirm their eligibility for the scheme. Businesses can use guidelines provided on the SBCI website to determine if they are eligible, and if so, to complete the eligibility form. As part of the process, businesses must submit a business plan, demonstrating the means by which they intend to innovate, change or adapt to meet their Brexit challenges. The SBCI assesses the applications and successful applicants receive an eligibility reference number.

Successful applicants can then apply for a loan under the scheme with one of the participating finance providers using their eligibility reference number. Participating finance providers are the Bank of Ireland, Ulster Bank and Allied Irish Bank. Approval of loans is subject to the finance providers' own credit policies and procedures.

As at 1 November, the SBCI had received 878 applications for eligibility under the scheme, of which 787 have so far been approved, with 20 applications deemed ineligible and 71 pending processing. To date, 209 applications have progressed to sanction at bank level. However, it should be noted that 158 of the total applications under the scheme are re-applications. In the overwhelming majority of cases, the reason for re-applications was that eligibility codes had expired.

Given that businesses have applied for eligibility under the scheme more than once, and that other applicants are still within the eligibility window, it is not possible to say definitively what number of applicants have received approval but not proceeded with their application within the eligibility window.

The lifespan of eligibility codes under the Brexit Loan Scheme has now been extended from four to six months.

Applications for Eligibility as at 1st November 2019
Approved 787
Ineligible 20
Pending 71
Total Received 878
Of which re-applications 158
Total progressed to sanction 209
Total value sanctioned €46,099,300

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