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Report: SHF to guarantee loans for housing SMEs in Mexico

Mexicandevelopment bank Sociedad HipotecariaFederal SNC, or SHF, plans to launch a program to provide guaranteesto banks for lending to small- and medium-sized housing developers in Mexico, El Economista reported April 6, citing thehead of the SHF, Jesús Alberto Cano Vélez.

The programis aimed at supporting around 300 developers in their first stage with loans ofbetween 15 million pesos and 20 million pesos, he said, adding the SHF will guaranteeup to 50% of the loan provided by the lender.

Largebanks already have a "very clear" portfolio in terms of housing developers,which makes it difficult for new developers to get financing, Cano Vélez explained.

Giventhat around 80% of housing developers in Mexico are SMEs, the SHF's aim with thenew program is to ensure these are better served, he said.

The banksthat could provide loans through the SHF guarantee include small companies suchas Banco Inmobiliario Mexicano SAInstitución de Banca Múltiple, MetrofinancieraSAPI de CV SOFOM ENR, MifelSA de CV SOFOM ER and Bancodel Bajío SA, he said.

Separately,Cano Vélez also said the SHF plans to sign in the coming days a new credit lineworth €50 million with German development bank KfW to expand its Ecocasa eco-friendly housing program.

Accordingto a previous report, the IDB and KfW already provided credit totaling $225 million for the construction of homesin Mexico in line with development goals established at the United Nations' COP16climate change conference in 2010.

As of April 6, US$1 was worth17.73 Mexican pesos.