Sinn Féin spokesperson on Enterprise, Trade, and Employment, Louise O’Reilly TD, has said that the lack of detail on the recently launched Ukraine Enterprise Crisis Scheme is worrying.
Teachta O’Reilly said:
“Today the Tánaise launched the much-needed Ukraine Enterprise Crisis Scheme.
“The scheme is aimed at helping viable but vulnerable firms in the manufacturing and internationally traded services sector who are affected by Russia’s war on Ukraine and those businesses impacted by severe rises in energy costs.
“Many firms and stakeholders in the business community have waited in earnest for this €200m scheme, and they placed a lot of hope in the Tánaiste getting the detail of the scheme right.
“Unfortunately, the launch today has left more questions than answers due to a worrying lack of detail on the administration of the scheme.
“That there are two strands to the scheme, one to help businesses with direct liquidity issues due to the war in Ukraine and the second to help energy-intensive businesses with gas and electricity costs, is perfectly fine; so too is the need for all applicants to submit an energy efficiency plan.
“The issue that arises for business is in relation to the administration of stream 1 and how funding decisions will be arrived at. Offering aid of up to €500,000 is most welcome, but whether that will be by way of grants, repayable advances, equity, and/or loans leaves businesses with many questions.
“There is a huge difference for businesses between getting a grant from the state or taking on additional debt through a loan.
“The business community need immediate clarity as to how Enterprise Ireland, IDA and Údarás na Gaeltachta will make decisions as to whether a business receives a grant, advance, equity, or a loan.”