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NBR survey shows main hindrances in companies' accessing loans

High taxation, fiscal environment unpredictability and competition, as well as the access to finance remain the main problems the companies in Romania are confronted with, reads a Survey on the access to finance of non-financial companies in Romania, logged in December 2016, and carried by the National Bank of Romania (central bank, BNR).

"Also found was an increase of the number of companies that deem the availability of the labour force a pressing issue as compared to the previous report," says the survey.

Referring to the access to finance, the percentage of the companies for which this is a stressful problem has grown as reported to the previous period (16pct of the companies).

"If analyzing only the companies that have attempted to access a loan April-September 2016, a slightly reduced proportion of those identified as pressing the access to finance (17pct as compared to 18pct in the previous exercise)," says the BNR research.

As for the major difficulties the companies do face in accessing a loan from the banks and/ or the Non-Financial Institutions April-September 2016, the first place was taken by the way too high rates and fees, the requirements on the value or kind of the guarantee, and the red-tape.

So, the domestic finance (profit reinvestment /sale of assets, loans from shareholders or capital increases, respectively) are the main source of finance for around 64pct of the interviewed companies.

"The banking finance has recorded a marginal advance, and yet it remains one of the least used sources of finance for the companies, some 17pct preferring it. Insignificant is the European funds' appeal, 98pct of the companies saying they've never had the experience of this kind of finance," reads the BNR paper.

Moreover, the intention of most of the companies is to cut their bank indebtedness, so that 59pct of them would not ask for a loan in the national currency (lei) and 65pct would never ask for a loan in euro, no matter the interest rates. Proportions are a bit higher as compared with the previous half year (57pct and 62pct, respectively, in October 2015 - March 2016).

"An important number of companies say they didn't ask for a loan from the credit institutions and the NFIs in April-September 2016 (79pct), similar to the previous period. Notwithstanding, most of the companies which have indicated to having appealed to the kind finance, say they have got the total sum they've asked for (85pct, 4pct more than the situation recorded in the previous half year)," reads the survey.

Out of the companies which have applied for loans and have received the total sums, the corporations were significantly ranking higher as compared to the SMEs (41pct for the corporations, against only 14pct for the SMEs), the weight of the small companies being even lower, even on a downtrend, say the BNR data.

The research was carried on 10,500 nationally, regionally represented non-financial companies.

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