Thursday, 20th January 2022

South African banks are likely to extend loans totalling up to R24.41 billion rand to enterprises until January 2021 under the government’s loan guarantee scheme, the Banking Association of South Africa (Basa) said.

Banks have so far loaned R16.71 billion under the scheme, which was launched by the government in May under a coronavirus relief package, Reuters reports.

The loans are part of a R500 billion package announced by president Cyril Ramaphosa in April to cushion the impact of coronavirus on South African businesses and individuals.

Basa said it has provided up to R33.61 billion in financial relief to individuals and small and medium enterprises up to 24 October. This includes 83% of all individual applications and 95% of requests from businesses since April, it said.

Last week, government announced that it will also extend South Africa’s disability and social relief grants until the end of December 2020.

In a gazette published on Monday (2 November), Social Development minister Lindiwe Zulu said that the temporary disability grants which lapsed in July 2020. or are due to lapse during the months of August to December 2020, will not lapse until the end of 31 December 2020 and must continue to be paid until 31 December 2020.

In the same directive, Zulu extended the special Covid-19 Social Relief of Distress grant of R350 per month until 31 January.

The top-up grant was government’s temporary relief against food insecurity and to cushion households severely battered by the pandemic.

The grant is open to applicants who are not beneficiaries of any other form of social security grant or UIF payment and are not currently receiving income.

Delivering the Medium Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS) in parliament at the end of October, finance minister Tito Mboweni said the Covid-19 grant would be extended but top-ups to social grants would come to an end at the end of November.

Child Support Grant (CSG) beneficiaries received an extra R300 in May and R500 between June and October, while other grant beneficiaries were topped-up with R250 for six months.


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