GIS – 05 May 2020: The Wage Assistance Scheme has already been implemented by
Government, through the Mauritius Revenue Authority to assist employers with
their wage bill for the duration of the lockdown, given the pressure that SMEs
are facing with their cash flow and the uncertainty surrounding restart of
business. This measure also aims at avoiding undue panic and laying off of
This statement was made by the Minister of Industrial
Development, SMEs and Cooperatives, Mr Soomilduth Bholah, at the National
Assembly today, in a reply to a Parliamentary Question pertaining to the
immediate measures taken and schemes set up at the level of his Ministry to
help small and medium enterprises (SMEs) which are on the verge of insolvency
amid the Covid-19 lockdown.
Minister Bholah highlighted that the exceptional
circumstances created by Covid-19 and resulting business uncertainties are
impacting heavily on the survival of SMEs. Given the vital importance of SMEs
which represent 40% of value and wealth creation and 55% of the workforce of
the Mauritian economy, Government has urgently put in place a series of
measures to ensure survival of industries, especially SMEs.
A Covid-19 Plan de soutien to provide
support to eligible enterprises, underscored the Minister, has been set up at
the level of the Development Bank of Mauritius and comprises the State
Investment Corporation Ltd, Investment Support Programme Ltd, SME Equity Fund
Ltd and SME Mauritius. Six financial schemes are being offered to SMEs, namely:
the Leasing Equipment Modernisation Scheme; the SME Factoring Scheme; Corporate
Guarantees to Banks; Equity Financing queasy equity; the Revolving Credit Fund;
and the Enterprise Modernisation Scheme.
Moreover, stated Minister Bholah, SME Mauritius has announced
five schemes in March 2020 in order to ensure the sustainability of SMEs. They
are: the Internal Capability Development Scheme; the Technology and Innovation
Scheme; the SME Marketing Support Scheme; the Inclusiveness and Integration
Scheme; and the SME Utility Connection Assistance Scheme.
He further expressed confidence that all these measures will
help in alleviating the harsh financial situation that SMEs and businesses in
general are currently facing. Government will leave no stone unturned during
these challenging times and will further introduce measures deemed appropriate
to share the burden of SMEs and other businesses, he added.
Government Information Service, Prime
Minister’s Office, Level 6, New Government Centre, Port Louis, Mauritius.
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