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No collateral needed for govt's stimulus package - Kosi Antwiwaa Yankey

By Justice Kofi Bimpeh
Ms. Kosi Antwiwaa Yankey, the Executive Director for the National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI)
Ms. Kosi Antwiwaa Yankey, the Executive Director for the National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI)
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Ms. Kosi Antwiwaa Yankey, the Executive Director for the National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI) says there will be no need for small business in the country to submit collateral to access government's stimulus package.

According to her, due to the nature of the crisis, the aim of the stimulus package is to help businesses to get back on their feet.

 She explained that any bottleneck to the process will defeat the purpose of the package.

"I think one of the things we're doing this time around is because GRA has asked you to push back on not paying taxes..., however, we have ways that we put into the system to be able to clarify and check on it.

"What we are trying to do is also move away from collateral and not make people submit collateral for the process bare in mind this is an emergency loan, there are different types of funding, there is funding that you provide when you are moving in a recovery phase when you have a situation and the situation is still with us so if you going to put up systems that are going to be a bottleneck for people then you have actually destroyed the system before it even starts so now there is an emergency we all have a challenge is the Covid-19," she added.

READ ALSO : Guidelines to access govt's GHS600m stimulus package for small scale businesses

Ms. Kosi Antwiwaa Yankey also stated that the focus now is not about the recovery of the fund but rather how best to get it to the people for economic activities to get back to normal.

About 200,000 Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) will benefit from government’s GH¢600m stimulus package.

There have been concerns over how the distribution of the monies will be done and also which businesses will benefit.

Ms Yankey said they will use the data available to share the money to these business and so far they are projecting that about 200,000 businesses will benefit from the package.

“There are three categories we are looking at, the micro which makes up about 80% of the population in terms of the sector. For the small, you have about 15% of the medium is about 1% of the sector. In view of that, we have looked at it an analyzed that about 200,000 businesses will benefit considering that the micro-businesses make up a huge chunk of the population, so we have done it in a way that it is representative of the entire sector”.

In a televised address to the country on March 27, 2020, this year, President Akufo-Addo announced a GH¢1.2 billion Coronavirus Alleviation Programme (CAP) as part of enhanced measures to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on households, contain disruption to economic activities and to rescue and revitalise industries.

He also announced additional reliefs such as extension of tax filing date from April to June; two per cent reduction of interest rates by banks effective April 1, 2020, and grant of six months moratorium on principal repayment by banks to entities in the airline and hospitality industries.

The CAP, which was subsequently approved by Parliament on April 9, dedicated GH¢600 million as soft loans for businesses, especially those in the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) se