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Business Link Pacific Offers COVID-19 Subsidy For SMEs In The Pacific Islands

Business Link Pacific is a New Zealand Government programme supporting private sector development in the Pacific Islands.
09 Apr 2020 13:32
Business Link Pacific Offers COVID-19  Subsidy For SMEs In The Pacific Islands
Business Link Pacific Business Services Manager Fiji Ramesh Chand conducting a business diagnosis for The Greenhouse Studio

Business Link Pacific (BLP)  is offering 100 per cent subsidy on business advice. This is in a bid to mitigate the negative impact of COVID-19 on Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) in the Pacific Islands.

It is also supporting the private sector in the Pacific Islands to address the current COVID-19 challenges and prepare for the future.

In a statement, BLP said it is offering the 100 per cent subsidy on business advice through its partners.

Business Link Pacific is a New Zealand Government programme supporting private sector development in the Pacific Islands.

“The COVID-19 Subsidy covers up to 100 per cent of services through BLP approved advisors focusing on services that support business continuity, contingency planning, access to available financial packages, refinancing and renegotiating loans and new working setups, such as IT systems, access to communications platforms and cloud-based software.

The subsidy package will cover services for up to NZ$5,000 per SME, and further support will be considered on a case-by-case approach.

“Business advice is more important than ever.

“BLP advisors can provide information about available support packages from national and international governments, identify weaknesses and strengths in businesses, establish new roadmaps, help with innovation, and if necessary, reinvent products and services.

“BLP approved advisors have access to online, quick and easy to use tools to identify business gaps, such as the Business Continuity Planner,” the statement said.

To access the subsidy, affected business with between 5 to 50 employees should take the follow the steps on the BLP website.

In addition to subsidies: “We are continuously providing updates and business best practices in the face of COVID-19.

“To get the latest information businesses can follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter and can also visit our News and Updates section on our website.

“Outside BLP services, businesses should prepare to isolate and protect teams for a period.

“They may need to use a range of strategies, including online meetings or organise shift work in which smaller groups of workers do the same jobs in a relay.

“Finally, businesses should identify and take advantage of the financial opportunities provided by banks and local governments, as well as refinancing or renegotiating loans.”

The COVID-19 Subsidy focuses on the following areas:

1.HR impacts on operations: immediate term health and safety emergency planning; workplace safety; work-from-home strategies; sick-leave and business continuity and remote communications; flexible arrangements, austerity measures, temporary staffing.

2.Business contingency and business continuity planning: mitigation of business interruptions and suspension; off-site relocations’ risk management strategies, insurance, data security and alternative business income and diversification.

3.Financial planning: cash-flow management; renegotiating finance and loans; long-term financial impact planning; taxation, applying for national governments’ or international relief programmes and funding.

4.Communications and marketing: crisis communications, business interruptions and customer engagement.

5.Business Coaching: Online free consultations on continuity planning, adaptation and mitigation in the face of COVID-19.

Feedbackmaraia.vula@fijisun.com.fj

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