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Government will set aside an additional R100 billion for protection of jobs and to create jobs.
“While there are several interventions that already exist within government to deal with the extremely high unemployment such as the Expanded Public Works Programme and the community works programme, these are not enough. The Coronavirus crisis will lead to many people losing their jobs,” the President said.
Since the declaration of a state of national disaster over a month ago, government has put in place a range of measures to support workers’ wages and assist companies in distress.
“By the end of Tuesday, the UIF’s special COVID-19 benefit has paid out R1.6-billion, assisting over 37 000 companies and 600 000 workers. Forty-billion rand has been set aside for income support payments for workers whose employers are not able to pay their wages,” the President said.
Government continues to provide assistance – in the form of loans, grants and debt restructuring – to Small, Medium and Micro-sized Enterprises (SMMEs), spaza shop owners and other informal businesses.
The value of this assistance to date is over R100 million.
An additional amount of R2 billion will be made available to assist Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and spaza shop owners and other small businesses.