If you run a business that engages in some form of international trade, or are looking to create a business plan for a company that will take part in or be affected by international trade, then it would be wise to gauge your eligibility for an International Trade Loan: a special category of business plan lending defined and regulated by the SBA. When seeking to write a business plan for International Trade Loans, there are some additional factors that you must consider in order to establish your eligibility. To make as convincing a case as possible, it is best to emphasize the international nature of your business.
The main key is that you demonstrate, in a clear and verifiable way, that the loan your business plan seeks will expand, improve, or enable active participation in an export market. Demonstrating that your business is (or will be) negatively impacted by import or export competitors, or that it will improve its positioning in the international market in a way directly attributable to the loan, can also significantly improve your chances of securing an international trade loan with your business plan. There are strict conditions on the exact use of international trade loan proceeds (see the SBA website for more information), but the loan can have a generous maturity period of up to 25 years. The maximum loan amount (gross) is $2 million, and the SBA-guaranteed total is $1.5 million, or as much as $1.75 million under certain circumstances, outlined in detail on the SBA website. Only loans approved more recently than December 7, 2004 can be eligible for the maximum guaranty from the SBA. This restriction applies in all cases.
Lastly, it is important to note that your business plan for an international trade loan can only be collateralized by collateral located in the U.S. and its possessions/territories. Lenders for international trade loans must take a first lien position on items obtained under the loan, and it is possible that further collateral will be required. For complete details and more information on the process of preparing a business plan to seek an international trade loan, contact the SBA directly or visit the SBA website.
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