PRESIDENT Cyril Ramaphosa has announced a massive R500 billion economic and social response to the COVID-19 pandemic but warned that the deadly coronavirus was still in its early stages.
Describing the stimulus package as “historic”, Ramaphosa said his administration would reprioritise R130bn from the current budget while other funds will be sourced from the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF), global partners and international finance institutions.
This is how the R500 billion will be used . . .
R20 billion – to fund the health response to coronavirus including personal protective equipment for health workers, community screening, increased testing capacity, additional beds in field hospitals, ventilators, medicine and staffing
R20 billion – municipalities to provide emergency water supply, increased sanitisation of public transport and facilities as well as food and shelter for the homeless
R50 billion – social relief for the most vulnerable families, temporary six-month coronavirus grant and special Covid-19 social relief of distress grant
R100 billion – to protect and create jobs
R40 billion – income support payments for workers where employers are unable to pay wages
R2 billion – to assist Small Medium and Micro Enterprises, spaza shop owners and other small businesses
R200 billion – loan guarantee scheme in partnership with major banks, the National Treasury and the SA Reserve Bank to cover companies with operational costs (salaries, rent and payment of suppliers)
Reserve Bank unlocked at least R80 billion in the real economy by cutting repo rate by 200 basis point and taking further steps to provide additional liquidity to the financial system.