The Credit Enhancement Facility (CEF) was launched by DBJ in 2009 and is an arrangement between the Approved Financial Institutions (AFIs) and Development Bank of Jamaica Limited (DBJ) geared towards providing partial collateral guarantees to AFIs for loans given to Small and Medium-sized Enterprise (SME) sub-borrowers.

The objectives of the CREDIT ENHANCEMENT FACILITY are:

  • To encourage SME lending through AFI’s by providing an incentive
  • To increase access to finance for qualified SMEs, for viable projects, by providing additional security coverage on SMEs loans.
  • To encourage the adoption of a new paradigm that facilitates the acceptance of non-traditional collateral and considers alternative sources of income.
  • To reduce the credit-related risk exposure to the AFIs.


  • 50% for DBJ-funded/AFI funded SME loans up to J$15M
  • 80% for Energy Loans up to a maximum of J$15M
  • 80% for *SMALL LOANS up to J$6.25M up to a maximum of J$5M

*SMALL LOANS are defined by DBJ as loans up to a maximum loan amount of J$6.25M

Benefits of the CEF

  • The guarantee is backed by cash
  • Accelerates loan processing time
  • Increases the prospect of accessing financing for viable businesses

Eligibility Criteria

a) Size of SME:
No. of Employees: up to 150
Annual Turnover: up to J$ 425,000,000.00

b) Length of time in operation:
Existing enterprises: 2 years and over (primary target)

Start-ups operating 1 year and over: can access the CEF up to a maximum of $5M. Start-ups operating less than 1 year: may be considered eligible, at DBJ’s discretion and Subject to special qualifications, including 5 years expertise or prior experience by the Entrepreneur in the particular business, sound business plan with clearly established markets for the goods and, entrepreneur has received some level of training in business management from an accepted business development service provider.

 CEF Guarantee Fees

Credit Enhancement  Fund  – 2% plus GCT on Guaranteed Amount

Credit Enhancement  Fund  – 1% plus GCT on Guaranteed Amount (Energy & Agricultural Loans)


Since inception, the CEF has issued guarantees totaling $1.3B allowing 329 SME sub-borrowers to access $2,770 million in loans for which they would not otherwise have qualified. The annual results are summarized below.



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The Agriculture sector received a total of 149 of the 329 loan guarantees from the CEF and accounted for 21.2% of the total guaranteed amount issued. The Services sector accounted for 38.2% with 104 guarantees issued. Agro-processing accounted for 2.4%, Manufacturing 16.1%, Distribution 18.1% and Tourism 4%.

During 2014/15, DBJ’s Credit Enhancement Facility received an award from the Association of Development Financing Institutions in Asia and the Pacific (ADFIAP) for its role in addressing the challenges of MSMEs’ access to finance.


  1. Visit your AFI and discuss your loan proposal.
  2. Indicate that you want to access a DBJ loan
  3. The AFI appraises the project and, if its assessment is favourable, the AFI applies to DBJ for funding for on-lending to the project.
  4. The DBJ, if it approves the AFI’s application, will disburse to the AFI for on-lending.