Currently, a lot of enterprises working in different industries are in a crisis situation and many of them will not resist and will go bankrupt. Among these are restaurants, hotels, educational centers, beauty salons and other types of services. These entrepreneurs have to cope with failed revenues. Some of them have to close. Even so, at the end of the month they must pay salaries, taxes, rent and honor their obligations to suppliers. The opinions were stated in a debate organized by the Institute for European Policies and Reforms, IPN reports.
Executive director of the Alliance of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises of Moldova Liliana Busuioc said that in the current situation generated by the COVID-19 pandemic, companies operating in different industries are exposed to huge risks and the SMEs are the most vulnerable ones. They account for about 98% of the economy. The association represents 47 companies working in eight industries, but until now they had a dialogue on the faced challenges and on eventual solutions with a much larger number of enterprises.
Liliana Busuioc noted that entrepreneurs’ main fears are related to the timely payment of salaries given the failed revenues, payment of taxes and other tariffs. They don’t know how to cope with the contracts signed with suppliers, especially as regards the payment of rent for commercial areas. The association launched a petition that was already signed by about 2,700 companies. They said they want fiscal relaxation or even subsidies from the state and assistance in negotiating the deferring of interest rates on loans, etc.
Mariana Rufa, executive director of the European Business Association, said the business community has to adjust to an absolutely new, unprecedented context. Authorities’ decisions were discussed swiftly with the businesses and there are particular divergences as regards the applicability of these decisions. “It was extremely important to ensure the implementation of all the decisions taken by the Government or those adopted by Parliament and to ensure continuity for those companies that decided to continue work as only particular types of activities were suspended. Some of the companies will enter technological unemployment starting with next week,” stated Mariana Rufa.
Mila Malairau, executive director of the American Chamber of Commerce in Moldova, noted that the association consists of over 130 companies with American capital and companies with investments from other areas, including local companies. The association represents the voice of practically 30 industries that were more or less affected by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The role of the association whose members include large and medium-sized enterprises is to ensure a dialogue between the business community and the authorities. In the created situation, among the main issues are how to ensure the labor process, how to honor the obligations to the state, etc. The business associations were consulted about fiscal measures, moratoriums on inspections and they are now discussing an eventual financial contribution from the state budget for companies that suffer losses. The communication with the authorities should continue and both the private sector and the public one should contribute to the recovery.
Prime Minister Ion Chicu also took part in the videoconference. He said the situation is rather difficult also because of the uncertainty and impossibility of making long- and medium-term estimates. But the authorities are trying to adopt a number of approaches as regards the support for the economy as the effects of the crisis situation will be definitely felt. The Commission for Exceptional Situations agreed a number of measures concerning businesses and these were discussed with the business community. A new set of measures is to be adopted next week so as to further support the business community and the economy. “You saw our objectives – to keep the current jobs with the assistance of the businesses and the state. We also have a number of proposals that we will present next week, especially as regards the creation of jobs in sectors that will be in great demand,” stated the official.
The debate was staged by the Institute for European Policies and Reforms with support from the Hanns Seidel Foundation.