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SMEs and agro industry stakeholders make recommendations for forthcoming Budget

Date: May 20, 2020
Domain:Economy & Finance; Business & Industry; Agriculture and Food Security
Persona: Business; Citizen; Government; Non-Citizen
 

GIS  – 20 May, 2020: The Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) as well as sugar cane and small planters representatives met the Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development, Dr Renganaden Padayachy, this morning, in Port Louis, for a pre-budget consultative session.

 

Around 20 representatives of the furniture, metal, and jewellery SMEs and small planters participated in the meeting, including the Camp Diable Agricultural Marketing Cooperative Society, Association Planteurs de l’EstAssociation des Petits Planteurs, Top Nature Co Ltd, and the Mauritius Cooperative Agricultural Federation. 

 

In a statement after the meeting, the different stakeholders stated that the meeting with the Finance Minister was very fruitful and positive. According to them, the different recommendations made will help to further improve and consolidate the different sectors which have been greatly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. They expressed optimism that the various proposals will be taken on board in the forthcoming Budget.

 

Recommendations

 

Several issues and propositions were voiced out by the representative. The SME representatives proposed, amongst others, for the extension of Wage Assistance Scheme till December; the application of a levy on imported goods so as to encourage the population to buy locally-made products; extension of moratorium for the repayment of loans; and training in digital applications so that SMEs are able to keep pace with the latest technologies.

 

Sugar cane planters’ representatives proposed for the VAT Refund Scheme to be maintained on agricultural equipment, machinery and other associated accessories; VAT on agricultural equipment like sprayers, farm tool equipment, seed trays to be waived; and levy on herbicide to be reduced. They also proposed that cane planters receive a minimum net rate of Rs 25 000 per tonne of sugar indexed with the cost of living for harvesting season 2020.

 

As regards vegetable planters, they suggested the setting up of the Central Wholesale Market and a virtual platform to help sellers sell their products online. They insisted that it is imperative to improve the country’s self-sufficiency in terms of agricultural production, hence, the need to train more agro-entrepreneurs, enhance technology exchange and capacity building.

 

#ResOuLakaz     #BeSafeMoris​

Government Information Service, Prime Minister’s Office, Level 6, New Government Centre, Port Louis, Mauritius. Email: gis@govmu.org  Website: http://gis.govmu.org  Mobile App: Search Gov

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