Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif Saturday said Youth Business Loan Scheme would open up new vistas of progress and economic prosperity in the county by channelizing energy and potential of youth.

Addressing the launching ceremony of Scheme, he said the government has made ‘a modest beginning’ by allocating Rs 100 billion for the scheme to lend around 100,000 people. He expressed the hope that around 500,000 people would benefit from the scheme during next five years. He said those criticizing the Scheme on media should learn to trust youth’s capabilities and cited similar loan schemes in Germany, UK and the USA, providing earning sources for youngsters.

In the past, banks had been lending up to Rs 20 billion to influential entities, and some of those even defaulted but no bank had been willing to support the youngsters to run their own businesses, hr added.

He said the loan scheme would not only help support the family of borrower but also of those employed by him, that would ultimately boost the national economy and eliminate poverty.

The Prime Minister also told the gathering that the conditions of guarantee for the loan, has been relaxed as now, even the blood relative of the applicant, having net worth 1.5 times of the loan, can give guarantee.

Even more than one person with cumulative net of required worth can give guarantee, he added.

He said even the applicant can give his own guarantee if he has the net worth 1.5 times of the applied loan.