Small and micro enterprises (SMEs) which suffered significant financial fall-out during the island shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic have until Wednesday, July 1, to take advantage of the special SME Wage Fund loan facility.
This reminder has come from General Manager of the Barbados Agency for Micro Enterprise Development Limited, or FundAccess, Esther Lord-Graham. Fund Access has responsibility for administering this facility.
Ms. Lord-Graham stated that the agency had received several queries from businesses and that officers in the agency are busy processing and disbursing funds to clients.
“In the past two weeks, we have received more than $650,000 in applications, and to date, we have completed the processing and the disbursement of approximately $452, 000,” Ms. Lord-Graham added.
Meanwhile, Minister of Small Business Entrepreneurship and Commerce, Dwight Sutherland, said that his Ministry is placing special emphasis on the rollout of the SME Wage Fund relief package.
He said that it is part of the Ministry’s overall mandate to ensure the survival and recovery of the SME sector, following the paralyzing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The SME sector has always been critical to our social and economic development, and we have a responsibility as a Government to support and aid that development, especially during this COVID-19 period, where many of the businesses within the sector have been, and continue to be, severely impacted. I want to encourage those who have not yet accessed this mechanism to do so and to seek advice from Fund Access and the other SME agencies in navigating this challenging time,” the Minister emphasised.