Sinn Féin spokesperson on Business, Enterprise and Innovation Imelda Munster has called on the Government to provide greater supports to businesses to keep as many companies alive as possible.
Deputy Munster welcomed additional measures announced yesterday but said they fall short on what is needed to provide urgent liquidity and financial supports to businesses struggling at this time.
Speaking following a briefing with the Department of Business and Enterprise, Deputy Munster said: “While I welcome the additional measures announced yesterday, they fall short of what is required to help businesses meet fixed costs during this unprecedented crisis.
“Making loans available at 4% is a recipe for future indebtedness. The state is borrowing at the moment at a quarter of one percent interest.
“We need to put in place 0% loans to support businesses in the here and now, while not forcing them into high levels of debt.
“Equally, with the easing of state aid rules, the government must examine equity schemes where the state essentially takes an equity share in a company in exchange for financial support.
“This will be particularly relevant for companies deemed strategically important to the state.
“Sinn Féin is also calling for a commercial rates waiver for a period of six months for those companies currently shut or significantly down revenue due to this crisis.
“We also need to see more action on commercial rents and insurance costs.
“During this crisis, we support businesses as much as we can, keeping employees connected with the companies and providing them with the liquidity and other supports needed to help them meet fixed term costs.”