Debt Restructuring Mechanism for MSMEs

(i) All scheduled commercial banks are advised to follow the guidelines / instructions pertaining to SME Debt Restructuring, as contained in circular DBR. No.BP.BC. 2/21. 04. 048/2015- 16 dated July 1, 2015 on ‘Master Circular – Prudential norms on Income Recognition, Asset Classification and provisioning pertaining to Advances’ and as updated from time to time.

(ii) In the light of the recommendations of the Working Group on Rehabilitation of Sick MSEs (Chairman: Dr. K.C. Chakrabarty), all commercial banks are advised vide our circular RPCD. SME &NFS.BC.No.102/06.04.01/2008-09 dated May 4, 2009 to: (a) Put in place loan policies governing extension of credit facilities, Restructuring /Rehabilitation policy for revival of potentially viable sick units / enterprises (now read with guidelines on Framework for Revival and Rehabilitation of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises issued on March 17, 2016) and non- discretionary One Time Settlement scheme for recovery of non-performing loans for the MSE sector, with the approval of the Board of Directors and (b) Implement recommendations with regard to timely and adequate flow of credit to the MSE sector.

(iii) Banks are advised to give wide publicity to the One Time settlement scheme implemented by them, by placing it on the bank’s website and through other possible modes of dissemination. They may allow reasonable time to the borrowers to submit the application and also make payment of the dues in order to extend the benefits of the scheme to eligible borrowers.

Framework for Revival and Rehabilitation of MSMEs:

The Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, Government of India, vide their Gazette Notification dated May 29, 2015 had notified a ‘Framework for Revival and Rehabilitation of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises’ to provide a simpler and faster mechanism to address the stress in the accounts of MSMEs and to facilitate the promotion and development of MSMEs. The Reserve Bank was advised to issue necessary instructions to banks for effective implementation and monitoring of the said Framework. After carrying out certain changes in the captioned Framework in consultation with the Government of India, Ministry of MSME so as to make it compatible with the existing regulatory guidelines on ‘Income Recognition, Asset Classification and provisioning pertaining to Advances’ issued to banks by RBI, the guidelines on the captioned Framework along with operating instructions were issued to banks on March 17, 2016. The revival and rehabilitation of MSME units having loan limits up to Rs.25 crore would be undertaken under this Framework. Banks were required to put in place their own Board approved policy to operationalize the Framework not later than June 30, 2016. The revised Framework supersedes our earlier Guidelines on Rehabilitation of Sick Micro and Small Enterprises issued vide our circular RPCD. CO. MSME & NFS.BC. 40/06.02.31/2012-2013 dated November 1, 2012, except those relating to Reliefs and Concessions for Rehabilitation of Potentially Viable Units and One Time Settlement, mentioned in the said circular.

The salient features of the Framework are as under:

i) Before a loan account of an MSME turns into a Non-Performing Asset (NPA), banks or creditors should identify incipient stress in the account by creating three sub-categories under the Special Mention Account (SMA) category as given in the Framework.

ii) Any MSME borrower may also voluntarily initiate proceedings under this Framework

iii) Committee approach to be adopted for deciding corrective action plan

iv) Time lines have been fixed for taking various decisions under the Framework.

Restructuring of loan accounts with exposure of above Rs.25 crore will continue to be governed by the extant guidelines on Corporate Debt Restructuring (CDR) / Joint Lenders’ Forum (JLF) mechanism.

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