Small businesses are dying and need €15bn bailout, Covid committee hears

Firms would not take up support as loans at 5-6% interest, lobby group chair asserts

“Saving and investing in SMEs is an investment to save jobs. It should be used to modernise our SMEs and create new well-paid 21st century jobs in our indigenous sector. That is the only way to pull us out of the recession.” File photograph: Getty

“Saving and investing in SMEs is an investment to save jobs. It should be used to modernise our SMEs and create new well-paid 21st century jobs in our indigenous sector. That is the only way to pull us out of the recession.” File photograph: Getty

 

Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) across the country are dying and need a €15 billion bailout, the chairman of SME Recovery Ireland has argued.

John Moran told the Oireachtas Covid-19 committee yesterday the sector required an immediate cash injection of €6 billion to survive the impact of the pandemic. He said existing support schemes must be restructured to provide grant aid and not debt. He said firms were afraid to take on further borrowings. He said firms would not take up support if it came in the shape of loans at 5 or 6 per cent (interest) and lengthy application forms.

“Saving and investing in SMEs is an investment to save jobs. It should be used to modernise our SMEs and create new well-paid 21st century jobs in our indigenous sector. That is the only way to pull us out of the recession. The July stimulus package (planned by the Government) must make lower cost liquidity available immediately for firms and include a major fiscal grant scheme.”

He said the €6.5 billion support package announced by the previous government two months ago had not worked.

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