EU extends grant aid to additional 431 local tousim-related businesses

European Union provides grant aid to Maldivian tourism-related small businesses to support recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo/Economic Ministry)

European Union (EU) has extended grant aid to 431 local businesses.

Grant aid was provided by EU to 181 guesthouses, 31 safaris and 219 other tourism-related small businesses.

A total of two million euros was extended for the businesses for the purpose of overcoming the damages incurred during the COVID-19 pandemic. This is 36.2 million Maldivian rufiyaa. However, only 1.4 million euros will be issued to recipients following deduction of 600,000 allocated for training expenses.

Grant aid previously awarded to businesses has already been dispersed to them. Meanwhile, 10 additional businesses set to receive grant aid were presented their award letters at a special ceremony held at K. Thulusdhoo on Thursday.

The grant aid will be dispersed through  Maldives Fund Management Corporation (MFMC) which is run under the oversight of Economic Ministry.

EU has stated that the overall objective of the project is to enable the Maldives to create a more resilient and diversified economy by enabling tourism sector SMEs to recover from the COVID-19 crisis that has resulted in a significant need for financial assistance to kick start operations to coincide with economic recovery efforts.