Supports for SMEs: Largest cash injection into the Irish economy in history
The long-awaited July Stimulus package was finally unveiled on Thursday night. Businesses were vocal in the past few weeks, in the hope that concerns over funding and supports would be addressed with this package. Taoiseach Micheál Martin announced that the package included more than 50 individual measures “which collectively address every significant area of economic activity in our country”.
An Taoiseach detailed a series of new business funding schemes, employee supports, tax cuts and capital investments totalling over €5 billion which will be rolled out over the coming months. The total stimulus package amounts to some €7.4 billion, with in excess of €2 billion in loan guarantees. This is thus far the largest cash injection into the Irish economy in history.
Much of the stimulus package is focused on aiding businesses to stay open and ultimately recover in the time of this “New Normal”. The Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise Leo Varadkar said of the new package:
“It is designed to help businesses to open, to help those that are already open to stay open, to get staff back to work and for those who cannot go back to their old jobs, there are new opportunities.”
What are some of these new measures and what will they mean for your business? The Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme is going to be replaced by an Employment Wage Support Scheme. Employers whose turnover has fallen 30% will receive a flat-rate subsidy of up to €203 per week per employee. The scheme has also expanded, including workers such as seasonal staff. In addition, some new start-up firms operating in affected areas will be included.
The €250 million restart grant is being more than doubled to €550 million and the upper limit for payments is being increased to €25,000. A top-up system will be in operation for businesses that already received support, and some businesses like B&Bs who had been ineligible will be included.
The waiver of commercial rates will be extended to September; this will cost the government €60 million.
€55 million is being made available for small and micro companies, including measures to reduce rates and grants equivalent to 0% in some loan products.
The Future Growth Loan Scheme is being expanded from €200 million to €500 million, with the support of the European Investment Bank. Businesses of up to 499 employees will now be eligible for longer-term loans at competitive rates.
A full list of supports are now available as per the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation: https://dbei.gov.ie/en/What-We-Do/Supports-for-SMEs/COVID-19-supports/Government-supports-to-COVID-19-impacted-businesses.html
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