€54m of Bank of Ireland cheap loans drawn down
Of the €65m allocated to Bank of Ireland under the €150m loan scheme, €54m has now been drawn down by farmers.
Bank of Ireland had the largest allocation of funds of the three participating banks in the scheme; Ulster Bank and AIB were the other two banks involved.
Bank of Ireland confirmed that the average loan is just under €30,000, with average term of almost three years. The maximum that a farmer could draw down was €150,000 for no longer than six years.
“The bank is reporting significant progress in getting funding to its farming customers,” John Fitzgerald, acting head of agriculture at the bank said.
Fitzgerald confirmed that the most amount of loans have been drawn down by the beef sector.
“The average loan value drawn under the scheme is €29,000 and the average loan term is 34 months. Forty-four percent of the loans issued by Bank of Ireland were for terms of greater than four years. Fifty-six percent of all funds drawn by customers to date have been to the beef sector, where the funding is typically used to finance the purchase of trading stock,” Fitzgerald said.
The low interest rate agri cashflow fund was developed by the Department of Agriculture in partnership with the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI).
The loan scheme was announced in last year’s budget and more than €4.2m per day.
In May, the Department of Agriculture confirmed that 42% of loan values had been applied to by dairy enterprises, 41% by beef and 8% by tillage. The sheep, pigs and horticulture sectors made up the rest.