Written answers

Thursday, 3 June 2021

Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment

Covid-19 Pandemic Supports

Photo of James LawlessJames Lawless (Kildare North, Fianna Fail)
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81. To ask the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment the number of businesses in County Kildare that have availed of the Covid-19 credit guarantee scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30041/21]

Photo of Leo VaradkarLeo Varadkar (Dublin West, Fine Gael)
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The COVID-19 Credit Guarantee Scheme (CCGS) is the largest loan guarantee scheme in the history of the State.The Scheme provides €2 billion in lending, for terms up to five-and-a-half years and offers a range of lending products between €10,000 and €1 million at interest rates below market rates for similar type loans.  It is available to SMEs and small mid-caps (business with less than 500 employees), including primary producers (businesses engaged in the farming and seafood sectors).  The Scheme is available until 31 December 2021 following a Government decision in March to extend it in line with the extension of the European Commission’s Temporary Framework on State Aid.

In order to provide the public with relevant data on the performance of the scheme, my Department publishes weekly and monthly reports on its website.  These reports provide data on loans drawn under a wide variety of themes and are available at enterprise.gov.ie/en/Publications/COVID-19-Credit-Guarantee-Scheme-Performance-Reports.html.

As at 20 May, 205 businesses in County Kildare have availed of the CCGS and have drawn loans with a value of €12,994,336.

The Scheme is currently available through three commercial banks, six non-bank lenders and nineteen credit unions.  This long-term policy goal of diversification adds competition in the market and ensures a wide range of loan products are available throughout the regions.

I would strongly encourage businesses to avail of the low-cost lending facilities provided under the scheme as they look towards reopening.

Photo of Ruairi Ó MurchúRuairi Ó Murchú (Louth, Sinn Fein)
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83. To ask the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment the details in relation to the extended eligibility of the small business assistance scheme for Covid; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30202/21]

Photo of Damien EnglishDamien English (Meath West, Fine Gael)
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The SBASC was introduced to help businesses not eligible for the Government’s COVID Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS) and the Fáilte Ireland Business Continuity grant or other direct sectoral grant schemes.

The Scheme was launched on 9th March 2021 through the Local Authorities, with a closing date of 21st April for applications for Q1 2021.

As you know it was recently announced that Phase 2 of the SBASC scheme would be expanded to include businesses who work from non rateable premises with fixed costs if such businesses meet all other eligibility criteria for SBASC. Those businesses who qualify will be eligible for a €4,000 grant.

The Government also agreed to extend eligibility for SBASC to those whose turnover is between €20,000 and €50,000 and meet all other eligibility criteria. These businesses who qualify will be eligible for a grant of €1,000.

This scheme will be open for applications in early June with a closing date of 21st July and Local Authorities will once again administer the scheme. .

Photo of Willie O'DeaWillie O'Dea (Limerick City, Fianna Fail)
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84. To ask the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment the number of County Limerick enterprises that that have applied to the small business assistance scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30052/21]

Photo of Leo VaradkarLeo Varadkar (Dublin West, Fine Gael)
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The total number of Small Business Assistance Scheme for COVID (SBASC) applications for County Limerick is 306.  Of that figure to date 113 have been approved for payment, and 37 are still being assessed.  156 applications have been refused. 

Refusals have occurred due to eligibility requirements such as the business’s turnover not being down 75% during the eligibility period, the business not operating from rateable premises, or the business not reaching the €50k turnover threshold.

As you may be aware I recently announced an expanded SBASC phase 2 scheme which will be open for applications in early June with a closing date of 21st July.  Phase 2 has been expanded to include businesses working from a non-rateable premises and those whose turnover is below €50,000. 

Businesses who are working from non-rateable premises and meet all other eligibility criteria will receive a €4,000 grant and businesses whose turnover is below €50,000 and meet all other eligibility criteria will receive €1,000 grant.  These businesses have been ineligible for schemes in the past and it is my intention to ensure that these businesses receive some state support during these difficult time.  The purpose of these grants are to help meet fixed costs associated with running a business.

Further details of this expanded SBASC scheme will be available shortly on my Department's website and on Local Authority websites who will once again administer the scheme.

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