In the statement made by the Ministry of Commerce, it was stated that efforts are continuing to ensure that tradesmen and craftsmen, the current representatives of the Ahi order, adapt to economic life, take an active role in commercial life and their contribution to economic growth increases day by day.
Regarding the work carried out so far to support tradesmen, “While 151 million lira of interest-reduced loans were provided to tradesmen and craftsmen within the financial means in 2002, the total amount of loans provided in this context since 2003 has approached 416 billion lira.
While the resource allocated by our Treasury for the subsidy of interest-free loans in 2002 was 50 million lira, as a result of the effective and efficient use of public resources since 2003, the amount of resources allocated has increased by 500 percent and approached 246.5 billion lira. While in 2002, Halkbank could provide tradesmen and craftsmen with interest-reduced loans with a limit of up to 5 thousand liras, today the upper limit for business loans has been increased to 500 thousand liras. “Our tradesmen and craftsmen have the opportunity to access financing of up to 1.5 million lira for business acquisition and vehicle acquisition loans.”
It was stated that following the earthquake disaster on February 6, tradesmen and craftsmen had the opportunity to postpone their loan repayments to Halkbank for 6 months, and said, “Then the opportunity to extend it for the second 6 months was provided. As a result of the disaster, the interest of the overdue debts of our tradesmen to credit and guarantee cooperatives were deleted and they were able to make their principal payments.” The possibility of postponement was also provided. As of the end of August, 20 thousand 498 tradesmen and craftsmen in the earthquake zone were provided loans with interest reductions exceeding 5 billion liras by Halkbank. As of August 31, loans worth 131.7 billion liras were provided to tradesmen. Along with all these efforts, loans and guarantees were provided. “Our cooperative system has become an exemplary system in the world, and our credit and guarantee cooperatives, the number of which has reached a thousand, continue to provide services to our tradesmen and craftsmen.”