BNDES expands financing for agricultural cooperatives

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Financing for cooperatives in Brazil will have more resources in the agricultural sector. The National Bank for Economic and Social Development (BNDES) announced, this Friday (2), at its headquarters in the center of Rio de Janeiro, changes to the Procapcred credit line, with the addition of R$ 2 billion to the budget, in addition the expansion of the credit line in dollars and the raising of R$808 million in Agribusiness Letters of Credit (LCA) that will reinforce BNDES’ conditions to finance the sector in more favorable situations.

In the Procapcred line, created in 2006 to strengthen the equity structure of credit cooperatives, along with the increase in resources, BNDES extended the validity until the end of 2025. In this line of credit, financing is offered directly to members to acquire shares -parts of the capital of individual credit cooperatives.

“This resource multiplies capacity approximately nine times, that is, for every R$1 billion that the BNDES is placing, it is providing R$9 billion in credit, which is direct credit for the capital”, observed the Financial and Digital Credit for MSMEs [micro, pequenas e médias empresas] from BNDES, Alexandre Abreu.

Another change was in the list of customers served, which was previously restricted to cooperative legal entities and individuals characterized as independent cooperative members and now, it has reached any individual member of a credit cooperative or cooperative bank, as long as they are a natural resident and domiciled in the Brazil.

The financing limit of R$30,000 was increased to up to R$100,000 per customer every two years, with reduced rates and lengthened terms, with the focus mainly on members in the North and Northeast regions. The president of BNDES said that, because of the influence of European immigrants, the cooperative system is most sought after in the South region and BNDES wants it to be expanded in the north and northeast as well.

For customers in these regions, the BNDES’ basic remuneration fell from 1.1% per year (aa) to 0.8% pa, and the maximum financing term can be up to 15 years. In other regions, the deadline was extended from 10 years to 12 years and the program’s grace period for all financing remained at up to two years.

Dollar

The dollar line is aimed at farmers and ranchers who export. Abreu said that this modality came with cheaper interest rates of around 7.9% per year. Launched in April last year at the Agrishow fair, with a value equivalent to R$2 billion, it was supplemented with the same value in May.

With the line it is possible to make investment, costing and storage. In January of this year, BNDES made a new supplement of R$4 billion. “It is available immediately and we hope to help a lot with new operations in the sector, which is always very demanding of credit”, said director Abreu.

The Minister of Agriculture, Carlos Fávaro, who participated in the announcement at the BNDES headquarters, in the center of Rio, celebrated his department’s partnership with the BNDES and the Ministry of Finance to release resources for the agricultural sector. “The new 2023/2024 Harvest Plan came, a record-breaking Harvest Plan and BNDES once again the great partner, Fernando Haddad and the entire team at the Ministry of Finance, interest rates, if we can’t reduce interest rates a lot, we can get lines of important credit facilities in partnership with BNDES, the biggest Safra Plan is happening”, he indicated.

“We are thinking about more lines of credit and more opportunities so that we do not let any producer sleep in the uncertainty of how the future of their activity will conduct”, added the minister.

Resources for Cooperatives

From 2022 to 2023, BNDES recorded a 63% growth in total disbursements to cooperatives. In 2022, it was R$14.6 billion, while last year it reached R$23.8 billion, with R$17.1 billion, or 72% of the total, being released to micro and small companies and micro and small producers rural. BNDES transfers resources through nine cooperative banks and nine credit unions.

For director Alexandre Abreu, in recent times there has been a silent revolution in the financial market where credit cooperatives and cooperative banks have gone from a position of approximately 3% of the national financial system in 2019 to practically 7% last year. Among micro, small and medium farmers, it is estimated that the number reaches 30% of the system.

According to the Organization of Brazilian Cooperatives (OCB), there are currently 4,600 cooperatives in Brazil, 20 million members and 520,000 employees. “If it’s not the biggest, it’s one of the biggest employers in Brazil,” said the BNDES director.

In credit cooperatives and cooperative banks, 729 credit cooperatives are registered with the Central Bank, with 15 million members and a credit portfolio of R$360 billion, which according to director Abreu, represents more than half of the BNDES portfolio. According to him, this movement causes banking deconcentration.

The Central Bank’s director of regulation, Otávio Damaso, says that the credit union issue was included by the institution in the BC# Agenda, which strengthened the institution’s presence as a regulator in the segment. “Within this Central Bank initiative that placed cooperativism as one of the pillars of its agenda, we see a segment that looks at some gaps that exist, but he goes there and fills this gap with great mastery”, pointed out the Central Bank’s director of regulation, Otávio Damaso, also in the presentation of the BNDES measures.

The president of BNDES, Aloizio Mercadante, highlighted the importance that the Central Bank gives to cooperativism. “In this cooperativism agenda, the Central Bank board is very committed, it helped to improve, improved regulation and the credit system is regulated and supervised with the same rigor as other institutions”, he said, highlighting that this role of the Central Bank is fundamental to sustainability for this experience.

In the opinion of the president of OCB, Márcio Lopes de Freitas, cooperativism has a very big difference when compared to other institutions. “Its ability to generate prosperity. Resources that go to the cooperative or that the cooperative operates, generate local development, drive the development locomotive of the regional cluster. Where there is a cooperative presence, and this presence is not weak in Brazil, not only in the area of ​​credit, but in all areas, the HDI index is much higher, because when the cooperative generates results, it generates results for its members. and for the cooperative itself and the resource is in the same region”, he pointed out.

The article is in Portuguese

Tags: BNDES expands financing agricultural cooperatives

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