Gov’t to roll out GH₵600m soft loan scheme for SMEs
Small and medium-scale enterprises will soon enjoy a GH₵600 million soft loan to cushion them against the devastating effects of the coronavirus lockdown.
President Akufo-Addo made this known on Sunday in his fifth address to Ghanaians on the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
The loan is expected to have a one-year moratorium and a two-year repayment period.
Addressing the nation, President Akufo-Addo said, “Government, in collaboration with the National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI), business and trade associations and selected commercial and rural banks, will roll out a soft loan scheme up to a total of six hundred million cedis (GH₵600 million), which will have a one-year moratorium and two-year repayment period for micro, small and medium scale businesses.”
It is not clear when the government will roll out this policy.
The President’s address comes shortly after the Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA) made a passionate appeal for shop owners to consider suspending rent payment until the coronavirus pandemic was brought to a halt.
According to the association, economic activities have come to a standstill because of the lockdown. Many businesses have been hit hard by the outbreak of the virus, while experts paint a gloomy picture for the economy.
Most owners of small and medium-scale enterprises in the capital have also complained of significant loses as a result of the lockdown.
President Akufo-Addo, on March 27, announced a partial lockdown in some parts of the Accra, Tema, Kasoa and Kumasi.
The lockdown led to a closure of most businesses, except for the companies providing essential services.