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Algarve second on list of microcredit receivers

The Algarve was the second region with the most projects supported by microcredit – small loans to help people without access to credit start their own businesses or projects – in the first half of this year, the national association for credit rights (ANDC) has announced.
Out of the 74 projects approved by ANDC in the first half of 2014, 20% are in the Algarve, and another 50 throughout the country are still awaiting approval – “a very positive evolution compared to last year”, the association says.
The only region that registered more approved projects than the Algarve was Trás-os-Montes, in the north of the country.
Further data shows that nearly €760,000 has already been attributed throughout the country in the first half of the year, representing a 29% increase compared to the first six months of 2013, and the sum is expected to keep increasing between July and December.
Although people with university degrees are using this type of loan more frequently, it is still mostly individuals with a secondary school education (12th grade) who benefit from these loans.
In terms of age, youngsters under 30 represent the majority (32%) of those supported by microcredit, but ANDC has stressed that people over 40 – especially between 41 and 50 – have been applying for the loans more often.
ANDC says that these positive results are due to its “personalised service and proximity to each candidate” in each process.