MSME Clearinghouse:  Newsletter

arrow COVID-19 Policy Responses (June 2020):
This is the fourth special edition of the OAS MSME Newsletter dedicated to measures recently announced by OAS Member States to mitigate the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs). As we highlighted in the first edition of March 31, 2020, the policy responses vary from country to country and are specific to the economic circumstances and public health of each Member State. Given that every day produces new developments, this third inventory is in no way exhaustive.

Country Policy Responses

The Government launches the MSME Plus line, which aims to support more than 140,000 companies that did not have access to financing.

The Government makes the MSME Plus line available, with a subsidized interest rate of 24 percent, for more than 140,000 micro and small companies that have not had access to financing.


Eligible Businesses Invited To Apply For VAT Loan Fund

The Barbados Revenue Authority advised eligible businesses that a $40 million VAT Loan Fund has been established to assist companies whose cash flow has been disrupted by the measures taken to contain the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.


Government regulates support for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises and the Emergency Plan to Support Employment

These are two resolutions issued by the Ministry of Economy and Public Finance that regulates the Special Program to Support Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises, in addition to the Emergency Plan for Employment Support and Job Stability.


Credit to face the Coronavirus crisis

Easy access to finance companies' working capital. A partnership with Caixa to offer lower rates, longer term and a better grace period, all to keep businesses running.


Business Development Bank Canada (BDC) deploys new program intended to support medium-sized businesses with cashflow needs as a result of COVID-19

BDC, Canada’s bank for entrepreneurs, announced the deployment of the Mid-Market Financing Program, part of the Government of Canada’s Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP). The financing builds on the federal government’s previous economic support programs and is intended to fund operational cashflow needs to ensure business continuity during this period of uncertainly. The program will be delivered working closely with businesses’ primary lenders, and will include support for several sectors, including oil and gas, as previously announced.


Sercotec launches the platform “Ruta Digital” to support micro and small entrepreneurs in the country

This new initiative is part of the Digitalize your SME program of the Ministry of Economy and seeks to provide different technological tools for MSMEs to improve management and productivity.


Colombia Productiva and Bancóldex launch a credit line to help MSMEs to implement biosecurity measures and reactivate production

Facing the normalization of economic activities in the country, Colombia Productiva and Bancóldex made available to businessmen the 'Reactívate line of credit', to meet the needs that arise in the process of reopening businesses.

The 'Reactívate Line' is aimed at micro, small and medium-sized enterprises in all sectors. The resources may be used to finance the costs and expenses associated with the implementation of biosafety protocols, including supplies and adjustments to guarantee the safety of those who work in the company or those related to certifications and seals that endorse biosecurity practices.

Costa Rica

The Alivio Program already has beneficiaries: 200 SMEs can have non-reimbursable funds and business support for the continuity of their businesses

200 small and medium-sized Costa Rican companies, already exporters or with export potential, who have had difficulties in their operations in the face of the national emergency due to COVID-19, can now have access to non-reimbursable funds and business support from the Alivio program, an inter-institutional effort of the Agency to Promote Foreign Trade of Costa Rica (PROCOMER), the Development Banking System (SBD) and the National Institute of Learning (INA).


Government of Dominica puts measures in place to assist tourism sector

Funds have been made available for those who lost their jobs as a result of this pandemic. The funds will be managed by the Dominica Social Security. Additionally, to assist micro and small businesses (including self-employed persons) such as manufacturers, bus drivers, barbers, hairdressers and persons in the tourism sector, to bridge the funding gap created as a result of the pandemic, the Government will provide loans of up to $ 15,000 to micro and small enterprises at an interest rate of one percent.

The Ministry of Public Works and the Digital Economy calls for a regional shift towards the digital economy

Dominica is moving forward with the plan to meet with stakeholders and local entrepreneurs to work on the challenges present so that the country can move towards fully embracing the digital economy.

Dominican Republic

The Ministry of Industry, Commerce and MSMEs launches “El valor de lo nuestro" in support of MSMEs facing the COVID-19 crisis

The objective of this platform is for MSMEs to find in one place all the support programs that have been coordinated by the Government and the private sector to benefit MSMEs in the face of the harsh situation they are experiencing, due to the effects produced by COVID- 19.


US $ 242 million in credits for medium and small businesses and the economic empowerment of women

New lines of credit for US $ 242 million that have been opened through cooperation between the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) and the Pichincha and Guayaquil banks.


Credit regulations for MSMEs affected by coronavirus COVID-19 approved

As part of the actions in support of the strengthening of businesses that have been directly and indirectly affected by the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic, the National Council for the Development of Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises approved the Regulation for Second Floor Credit Operations of the Trust “Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Development Fund”, through which the credits will be channeled tol benefit entrepreneurs and businessmen of the mentioned sector.

The availability of funds to meet MSME credit demands increases

As part of the initiatives in support of strengthening businesses that have been directly and indirectly affected by the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic, the National Council for the Development of Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises approved a new increase in funds available.


To support MSMEs, the government organizes the first virtual fair “Honduras Consume Local”

This is the first virtual fair that the Government organized in support of Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) against the economic blow of the covid-19 pandemic.


Businesses Facing Financial Difficulties Can Contact The Office of the Supervisor of Insolvency (OSI)

The Office of the Supervisor of Insolvency (OSI) and Office of the Government Trustee (OGT) are encouraging persons who have been facing financial obstacles as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic to engage the organisations for assistance. The organisations offer services that can assist businesses or persons who have seen a reduction in income or have lost their jobs recently.


Financial support to micro-enterprises and independent workers

Credits to support family micro-businesses and self-employed workers in the face of damages caused by COVID-19. Includes financing of 25 thousand pesos per business or person, to be paid in three years, including three months of a grace period.


AMPYME delivers seed capital to more than a hundred Panamanians who will be able to turn their business ideas into reality

After completing 40 and 60 hours of training and preparing a business plan, 79 people (49 women and 30 men) will receive AMPYME Capital Semilla, for an amount of B /. 72,500.00, which will promote the development and sustainability of its small companies.


Financial support to MSMEs


Through Purchases to MYPErú acquisitions will be made for about S / 900 million this year

This year, it is expected that around S / 900 million acquisitions will be made through the economic reactivation mechanism called Purchases from MYPErú. This will benefi micro and small entrepreneurs throughout the country.

MSMEs will have access to lower fees in the formalization process

Emerging entrepreneurs who start their formalization process through the National Program Tu Empresa of the Ministry of Production (Produce) will obtain up to 90% savings in the process of setting up their businesses.

United States

SBA and Treasury Announce New EZ and Revised Full Forgiveness Applications for the Paycheck Protection Program

The U.S. Small Business Administration, in consultation with the Department of the Treasury, posted a revised, borrower-friendly Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan forgiveness application implementing the PPP Flexibility Act of 2020.


Prodiseño, the program that promotes the competitiveness of MSMEs through design, opens its 2020 edition

Prodiseño is the MIEM program, in collaboration with the Uruguayan Chamber of Design, which seeks to promote that MSMEs increase their competitiveness by incorporating design into different aspects of their business. The MIEM will subsidize consulting services from professional designers.

MIEM surveyed MSMEs from all over the country to know their expectations and needs during the health crisis

The MIEM reinforced its work in the country during the health crisis. As part of this, it carried out an opinion poll, the results of which constitute a relevant input for the strategy. Among the results, stands out the awareness of the Government measures adopted to boost the MSME sector.

      International Organizations
Caribbean Development Bank

CDB to provide almost US$67 million to seven Caribbean countries to counter the COVID-19 crisis

The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) is making available emergency loans to seven Caribbean countries, in the first instance, to finance the response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Bank’s Board of Directors has approved a total of US$66.7 million for Antigua and Barbuda (US$13 million), Belize (US$15 million), Dominica (US$2.5 million), Grenada (US$5.9 million), Saint Lucia (US$10.8 million), St. Vincent and the Grenadines (US$11.3 million), and Suriname (US$8.2 million).




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