|Revenue Commissioners, insurance companies, banks & local authorities have a vital role to play |
Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Business, Enterprise & Innovation, Robert Troy and Spokesperson on Finance Michael McGrath have said that emergency measures must be put in place immediately to help businesses survive the COVID-19 crisis.
Fianna Fáil has said that many small and medium sized businesses will face very significant cashflow issues in the short-term and has called on the Revenue to adopt a flexible and supportive role. The party has said that, for example, businesses that make a VAT return but cannot make the payment should be allowed to defer the payment without the imposition of any interest or penalties.
The party has said banks need to support businesses with additional working capital at this time.
Deputy Troy said, “Businesses are facing an unprecedented situation and need to know that they will be able to keep their heads above water. Additional supports are needed in the form of deferral of VAT and PRSI tax payments where the businesses are experiencing cashflow problems. Banks also need to issue clear guidelines on loan repayment deferrals.
“The Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI) liquidity loans which were announced by Minister Humphreys should be processed in a timely manner. The loans which will see €1.5m available at reduced rates, need to be accessible.
“The Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government should direct Local Authorities to be flexible when it comes to commercial rates returns for businesses that genuinely cannot afford payments as a result of this crisis. These steps are necessary so that businesses can keep a positive cashflow.
Spokesperson on Finance Michael McGrath continued “It is inevitable that many businesses will come under severe pressure in the next number of weeks. We must ensure that viable businesses are supported to come through this period.
“For example, insurance providers cannot be allowed to deny cover for business interruption on the grounds that COVID-19 was not listed as a specified disease on the policy document.
“Covid-19 was only identified in recent months and listed as a notifiable disease in Ireland on February 20th. I would call on all insurance companies to review this stance and remove this unfair clause. It is in the interests of everyone that good businesses are helped through this period. We have to ensure that banks, insurance companies, the Revenue and others play their part to assist businesses at this time” he concluded.
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