Small businesses suffering due to bushfires will soon have access to new grants and low-interest loans to help them get back on their feet.

Key points:

  • The Federal Government has announced grants of up to $50,000 and low-interest loans of up to $500,000
  • The assistance is available for businesses who have lost assets or had a major dip in revenue due to the bushfires
  • Businesses in fire-affected communities say staying afloat will be a massive task

The Federal Government will today announce top-up grants of up to $50,000, tax-free, and low-interest loans of up to $500,000 to businesses that have lost significant assets or had a major dip in revenue.

It marks the latest announcement on the release of money from the Federal Government’s national bushfire recovery fund.

The Government yesterday also announced $76 million from the same fund would go towards boosting tourism.

Peter Strong, chief executive of the Council of Small Business Organisations, was among those consulted on the best approach ahead of today’s announcement.

“We were hoping to get grants of around $20,000 and the grants are $50,000,” Mr Strong said.

“So that’s more than double what we were looking at so you can’t complain about that.”

He also welcomed the loans.

“This is a loan that’s basically interest-free — or very, very low interest — and you don’t have to do any repayments for the first couple of years,” he said.

“But you do need a healthy business to take advantage of that particular loan.”

These loans could be used for restoring or replacing damaged assets and for working capital.

 

Date: 20 January 2020

Source: ABC News Room

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