Covid-19 Support Finder for business

To help businesses find and apply for the financial support that is available to them, the Western Cape Government, City of Cape Town and Wesgro have launched a fund location tool for businesses in the Western Cape.

The online tool asks the user five easy questions, ranks the answers against pre-determined criteria as stipulated by the various relief measures, and provides a list of relief measures the business may be applicable for. The process takes under a minute - www.supportbusiness.co.za/covid-19-support-finder

Any businesses in the Western Cape who need support and advice can contact the Covid-19 Content Centre at supportbusiness@wesgro.co.za

For more info visit www.supportbusiness.co.za

Financial support for SMMEs

The Department of Small Business Development announced on 19 March 2020 that a Debt Relief Fund is on the horizon to assist small businesses impacted by Covid-19. The Debt Relief Fund is aimed at providing relief on existing debts and repayments for SMMEs during the period of the Covid-19 State of Disaster.

According to Small Business Development Minister Khumbudzo Ntshavheni, the Debt Relief Fund could be used for mortgage, vehicle or other business debts that small businesses will need assistance with.

Enterprises seeking assistance must register on the SMME South Africa portal at www.smmesa.gov.za.

Financial support for the tourism sector

The Department of Tourism has made an additional R200 million available to assist SMMEs in the tourism and hospitality sector who are under particular stress due to the impact of Covid-19.

The fund will be administered to benefit SMMEs in all the nine provinces and various tourism sub-sectors.

For more information on the fund please contact the Tourism Service Call Centre on 0860 TOURISM (868 747) or email callcentre@tourism.gov.za (Operational from 08:00 - 22:00, Mon - Fri) Visit www.tourism.gov.za for more info.

Financial support for sports, arts and culture sector

The National Department of Sports, Arts & Culture has made R150 million available for cancelled events, digital solutions and a wide array of projects.

Please note that applications for this fund closed on 6 April at 23h59

Visit www.dac.gov.za for more info.

The Western Cape Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport has also made financial relief available for our provincial cultural, creative and sports sectors.

Please note that applications for this fund close on 19 May at 16h00

Read the official media statement for more info.

Download Frequently Asked Questions about this fund.

Financial support for agriculture sector

The Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development has made available R1.2 billion mainly for small-scale farmers and producers who are currently in production and preparing for winter crops.

Please note that applications for this fund closed on 22 April at 16:00

Visit www.daff.gov.za for more info.

The Covid-19 Temporary Employer-Employee Relief Scheme (COVID-19 TERS)

To mitigate the impact of the 21-day national lockdown on workers, business and the economy, the Department of Labour has announced the development of the Covid-19 Temporary Employer-Employee Relief Scheme (COVID-19 TERS) to support businesses that are unable to pay their employees.

Caring and responsible employers that are unable to pay the full salaries of the workers they send home for their health and safety due to the lockdown are encouraged to apply for the Covid-19 TERS Benefit from the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) by sending an email to covid19ters@labour.gov.za.

Upon sending the email, applicants will receive an automated reply which outlines all the steps and details, including the requirements to claim benefits. During the lockdown period, manual claims will not be accepted to reduce contact between people to stop the spread of Covid-19.

The Covid-19 TERS Benefit is de-linked from the other UIF Benefits and other processes, however applications are subjected to normal verification and validation processes of the Fund. UIF has developed a hotline number: 012 337 1997 for Covid–19 TERS Benefit enquiries during the lockdown period.

Visit www.labour.gov.za for more info.

The Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) facility

The Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) has put a package together with the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition of more than R3 billion for industrial funding to address the situation of vulnerable firms and to fast-track financing for companies critical to our efforts to fight the virus and its economic impact.

This facility will be available to South African owned businesses.

The IDC have made two special interventions:

1. R500 million has been allocated for trade finance to import essential medical products;

2. R700 million has been allocated for working capital and equipment and machinery

In addition to this, the IDC is engaging industry players to address surges in demand:

  • Ensuring food security by prioritizing support to Agriculture and food value chains
  • Tourism sector support for working capital
  • Bridging finance to support supply chain interruptions
  • Working capital to ensure energy security by supporting suppliers of primary energy
  • Working capital and Bridging Finance to SMEs that provide components to car-makers

Essential services that fall outside of normal IDC sectors will be considered for funding, as a measure they have now introduced in the next quarter.

For existing clients, the IDC is already in contact with its business partners to consider repayment deferments on a case-by-case basis.

Visit www.idc.co.za for more info.