The first Pre-Budget consultative meeting for Budget 2021-2022 with representatives of the Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) was chaired, this afternoon, by the Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development, Dr Renganaden Padayachy at the Conference Room of the Ministry, in Port Louis.
The meeting served as platform for representatives of the Government and the SME sector to display a shared vision so as to achieve greater economic growth. Discussions focused on the challenges and opportunities facing the Mauritian economy and in finding concrete solutions to address loopholes affecting the business activity as well as job creation in this COVID-19 pandemic situation.
Nine representatives from the SME sector, including associations of jewelry, small contractors, handicraft, women entrepreneurs, leather and leather related products participated.
Several issues and propositions were voiced out by each representative. They are, amongst others, the extension of Wage Assistance Scheme; the application of a levy on imported goods so as to encourage the population to buy locally-made products such as leather and leather by-products; extension of moratorium for the repayment of loans and; tackling issues the entrepreneurs face in obtaining grants from the Development Bank of Mauritius Ltd.
In a statement after the meeting, the President of the SME Chamber, Mrs Maya Sewnath, indicated that the meeting between the Finance Minister, representatives of the Ministry, and SME sectors was very fruitful and positive.
She pointed out that the propositions will help to further improve and consolidate the different sectors. The ultimate aim, she added, is to enhance the quality of life of entrepreneurs affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.