The Ministry of Culture launched a new loan scheme on Sept. 23, providing loans of up to NT$12 million to cultural and creative businesses less than five years old and run by individuals aged 20 to 45, as part of the Ministry's effort to create an environment that is conducive to youth entrepreneurship in the nation's creative arts sector.
The scheme is a joint project organized by the Ministry, the Taiwan Creative Content Agency, the Small & Medium Enterprise Credit Guarantee Fund of Taiwan (Taiwan SMEG, 中小企業信保基金), and ten banks across the nation.
In the past, banks were relatively unfamiliar with the cultural and creative industry, creative entrepreneurs thereby had relatively less loan opportunities, the Minister of Culture Lee Yung-te said at a press conference on Sept. 23.
The Ministry has hence sought approval from the Executive Yuan, the highest administrative organ of the nation, to set aside NT$10 billion for loans to cultural and creative businesses from the Executive Yuan's NT$60 billion funding for the youth entrepreneurship support project, Lee explained.
The loan program is open to the creative and cultural businesses that have existed for less than five years and run by individuals aged 20 to 45. The individuals are also required to take 20 hours physical or online courses on entrepreneurship.
Eligible performing groups, Youtubers, podcast creators, bookstores, animation companies, exhibition organizers, and craft, design, music or illustration studios are encouraged to apply.
The scheme offers three types of loans with different amounts – up to NT$ 2 million for start-up businesses that have existed less than 8 months, up to NT$4 million for operating expenses, and up to NT$12 million for capital expenditures. The government will provide credit guarantees of 80 to 95 percent.
To facilitate the application process, which will take seven working days, applicants for a loan amount less than NT$1 million are not required to present a proposal or information on their guarantors. In addition, interest for the first five years will be subsidized by the Ministry.
To explain the scheme in detail, the Ministry will hold a total of 20 seminars nationwide with on-site counseling service. Applicants are welcome to summit their applications at the seminars. The application form is available here.
To further boost the nation's creative industries, the Ministry will team up with Taiwan SMEG before the yearend to launch an equally favorable loan scheme for those who are in the sector but over 45 years of age or have businesses that have been established for more than five years.