More than 10,000 small business owners across the US have received over $1 billion in SBA loan approvals in the 15 months since the September 11th attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. The Small business Administration?s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, which was set up to help businesses that were adversely affected by the events of 9/11, is said to have saved 166,000 jobs.

?The aftermath of the attacks created ripples of economic impact that were felt beyond the New York City and Virginia epicenters? said SBA Administrator Hector V. Barreto. ?Offering the loans to businesses beyond the attack areas will contribute to the economic recover of the nation. We?ve heard from entrepreneurs across the country who say these loans were instrumental in saving their businesses.?

Small businesses that suffered substantial economic injury as a direct result of the September terrorist attacks or a federal action taken in response to the attacks may be eligible for an EIDL. These long-term loans carry a low interest rate of 4% and are to provide working capital needed to pay ordinary and necessary operating expenses they cannot cover because of the events surrounding 9/11.

Businesses in the New York City area and Northern Virginia have only until 01/31/03 to apply for these loans. Interested business owners may contact SBA?s Disaster Area office at 1-800-659-2955.