WHILE incentives from the government are giving businesses economic relief from the pandemic, a business leader is appealing to the private sector to help fellow enterprises recover from their losses and not burden them more with increases in fees.
Mandaue Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Steven Yu said there are many attempts from the private sector to increase fees in rental and services, among others.
“For example, repair fees were increased substantially because technicians have to wear personal protection equipment when working,” he said.
According to Yu, any increase can add to hopelessness and depression, which could bring the economy and businesses down. He said while he understands the plight of all entrepreneurs to recover from their losses, hiking fees is counterproductive in the economic recovery.
“There is a time for everything. Now is not the time to increase when we can still afford to. Any little help can spark confidence which is what we need to revive our economy,” he said.
Yu observed that so far, there have been no hikes in fees from the government.
“There are minor fees which were ratified and approved pre-Covid like this cargo handling rate increase but this was subsequently cancelled,” he said.
The Cebu Port Authority deferred the implementation of the five percent increase in cargo handling charges of foreign cargoes until Oct. 21, 2021.
Under the Bayanihan 2 law, the government is allotting P39.472 billion as capital infusion to government banks, of which P10 billion was set aside for the Department of Trade and Industry’s Small Business Corp. Of the P10 billion, P4 billion will be devoted to low-interest loans to micro, small, and medium enterprises, cooperatives, hospitals, and overseas Filipino workers and P6 billion for tourism.
Moreover, Bayanihan 2 also grants a 60-day extension for loan payment. It also requires public utilities to implement a minimum 30-day grace period for the payment of fees falling due within the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) or modified ECQ without penalties. (JOB)