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Micro businesses affected by Covid-19 can now apply for loans of up to €25,000.

A new €15 million support fund is being opened for companies with ten or less workers.

They will not require repayment or be subject to interest over the first six months.

Government will also recoup interest over the following six months, while APR will be fixed at between 4.5 and 5.5 per cent.

Chief executive of Microfinance Ireland, Garrett Stokes, says it will be open to all types of businesses:

"We are very flexible but it is for people who have been unable to get funding through the banks or normal channels.

"Really what we are looking for is a business that is sustainable beyond the end of the pandemic and we are there to support them."

 

Overhead expenses

 

According to the Department of Business, Enterpirse and Innovation, the new Microfinance Ireland Covid-19 loan scheme assists businesses with fewer than ten employees, which have been impacted negatively by Covid-19.

They said it will provide much-needed funding to help microenterprises meet payments for stock, working capital requirements and other overhead expenses through the provision of low-cost lending facilities.

The Tánaiste recently introduced the Microenterprise Loan Fund (Amendment) Bill to provide for the increased funding.

Speaking about today's announcement, Leo Varadkar said:

 

"We’re looking at all the ways we can support enterprise during this really difficult time. This extra money will allow Microfinance Ireland re-open the Covid-19 Loan Fund.

"This fund has proven to be a lifeline for micro-enterprises over the past few months, where we’ve seen nearly 700 businesses with fewer than ten employees avail of it. "

Companies interested in applying or finding out more information can contact Microfinance Ireland https://microfinanceireland.ie/loan-packages-2/covid19/

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