Africa-Press – Lesotho. Central Bank of Lesotho (CBL) launched the Lesotho Electronic Registry Interest of Moveable Assets (LERIMA) project yesterday, which is intended to secure transactions regime and
collateral registry in Lesotho. Speaking at the launch, CBL Governor Dr. Retšelitsoe Matlanyane stated that the launch marks the key milestones in the development of the financial
system in Lesotho. She said they have been working on this infrastructure for a number of years in a quest to improve access to credit in Lesotho. “We are
launching the Secured Transactions redeem and LERIMA, it is a culmination of years of collaborative efforts between the Central Bank of Lesotho and World
Bank as well as other stakeholders we work with, I should point out that the Bank of Ghana who are our partners in the sense that we got technical assistance from them and learnt a lot from them in this initiative,” she said.
Matlanyane indicated that the development of LERIMA was part of the financial sector reforms that were planned under the financial sector development strategy and it is aimed at strengthening
the financial system, fostering financial inclusion and improving access to finance which is an epidemic problem in the region. “Specifically it provides
for an enactment of modern secured transactions or personal moveable property law, the establishment of a national public registry for security interest in
moveable properties, assets and per meetings self-enforcement of security interest,” said Matlanyane. She appreciated the work and effort by the World Bank, which is their partner under which they worked
with in private sector competitiveness and economic diversification project which supported this initiative since 2015. “The collateral facilitates credit
by reducing potential laws that lenders may face from lending defaults when land and buildings are widely in no use, we realized that moveable assets and
properties were not included as collateral or defined a traditional in our restrictions hence our initiative include them so that they can also be used as collateral more
importantly they should be registered so that they are not used in multiple applications of credit,” she said. The Governor extended that reforming the legal legislation around moveable collateral was important hence
the inclusion of a modern electronic registry that will help to track a collateral that has been used in loan applications. Matlanyane noted that both
credit providers and private sectors will have access to this infrastructure. Also speaking at the launch, Lesotho Post Bank (LPB) Managing Director and Chairperson of Bankers
Association of Lesotho Molefi Leqhaoe highlighted on some of the challenges and opportunities associated with lending Micro- Small and Medium Enterprises
(MSMEs) in alignment with the good initiative intended or launched.
“It is highly perishable and there are no controls allowing the movements which is one
thing that made us very reluctant to take moveable collateral as part of the security so the invention of this project has excited us, we will now be participating with our clients ensuring they are financially included. The other challenge was that collateral evaluation pledged assets remained with the debtor,” he said.