Credit unions launch immigrant loan program
By Our Staff
Halifax Chronicle Herald
Tue. Jan 20 – 4:46 AM
Nova Scotia credit unions are accepting applications for a new financing program for immigrants.
The small business financing program, announced in December, is open to immigrants who have recently moved to Nova Scotia and are interested in starting, expanding or buying a small business. Loans are available up to $150,000 for successful applicants.
The program gives immigrants an opportunity to become small business owners, put down roots, and contribute to a prosperous economy for all Nova Scotians, Economic Development Minister Murray Scott said in a news release Monday.
Credit unions across the province are running the program and will hold information sessions starting next week for people interested in applying.
“Immigrants who are able to establish businesses here are more likely to stay in Nova Scotia, thereby contributing to Nova Scotias economic, social and cultural growth,” said Immigration Minister Len Goucher.
Details on the sessions and locations are available on the Nova Scotia Co-operative Council website at www.nsco-opcouncil.ca .
“In Nova Scotia, there are more than 30,000 small businesses, representing 92 per cent of all businesses in the province. Many immigrants find it difficult to get business funding as lending institutions in Canada generally do not recognize international credit history,” Dianne Kelderman, CEO of the Nova Scotia Co-operative Council, said in the news release.
The Department of Economic and Rural Development is providing $2 million in a loan guarantee to the program. The office of immigration will provide $100,000 a year for operating and other costs.