Standard Chartered Sri Lanka announced today the facilitation of financing for Industrial Clothing Limited (Midas Safety Sri Lanka) as well as Hayleys PLC’s subsidiaries Dipped Products PLC and Haycarb PLC to enhance their manufacturing capacity of essential personal protective equipment (PPE) for the global fight against COVID-19. These companies were the latest Sri Lanka-based clients to complete a drawdown from the Bank’s global USD1 billion not-for-profit financing.
In the face of the global pandemic, many companies, including members of the apparel industry in South Asia, switched to manufacturing and distributing high demand products such as face masks, ventilators, sanitisers and other PPE products. Standard Chartered launched the not-for-profit global financing initiative in March 2020 to support such efforts. To date, the Bank has provided more than USD45 million in lending and working capital to companies in Sri Lanka under this programme.
Commenting on the Bank’s ongoing efforts to support local businesses in combating COVID-19, Bingumal Thewarathanthri, CEO, Standard Chartered Sri Lanka said, “Access to funds is a key factor in business recovery following a crisis of this magnitude. At Standard Chartered, our focus has been on supporting our long-standing and new partners to recover fully, and to contribute to the fight against the pandemic. Sri Lanka was the first South Asian market where we extended a facility from the USD1 billion financing commitment, and we are pleased to continue supporting more local businesses to drive the country’s economic recovery.”
The Bank extended a USD5.5 million loan to Midas Safety Sri Lanka which enabled them to increase production of medical gloves and meet growing demand globally. A USD3.6 million loan to Dipped Products PLC helped them add new production lines for personal protective gloves destined for the US and the EU. Haycarb PLC, a manufacturer of charcoal-based activated carbon for purification, stepped up its face mask manufacturing operations with the upgrade and expansion of its in-house manufacturing and warehousing facility and increased its mask production for both domestic and export markets, all with the help of a USD1.5 million loan facility from Standard Chartered.
“Standard Chartered has a global commitment to contribute effort to combat COVID-19 at a time when our clients need our support more than ever. We will continue to work with our clients and extend financing support to help their businesses recover from this challenging period,” said Tamani Dias, Head, Local & International Corporates, Standard Chartered Sri Lanka.
The Sri Lankan apparel industry, the country’s largest contributor to its export revenue, came to a standstill as a result of the global pandemic and a nationwide lockdown earlier this year. Through the Standard Chartered not-for-profit financing commitment, the Bank facilitated the financial requirements of leading garment manufacturers MAS Intimates and Brandix in June and July 2020 respectively, to produce and export PPE to markets including the US.