Governments across the world have been announcing support to businesses to tide over the difficulties posed by the COVID-19 ever since the crisis began. In the UAE, governments at the federal and individual emirates level have been loosening their purse strings from the early days of the virus outbreak to help businesses that have been impacted.
A close look at the economic support programme announced by Dubai in five tranches points to its targeted and dynamic approach to stimulus. Last week, Dubai government announced an additional Dh315 million package, bringing the total value of the economic support since the beginning of the global crisis to Dh7.1 billion.
The latest tranche of funding proves that the government is committed to a continuous process of helping businesses until they are able to stand on their own feet. The new set of measures include exemptions and extensions of previous initiatives, reaching out to old and new beneficiaries alike. The latest tranche too has come after careful considerations based on the recommendations of the Dubai Economy Support Committee.
As these measures come as a huge relief for the tourism, hospitality, entertainment and business events sectors, the decision to accept licence fees in monthly installments without the need to pay a 25 per cent down payment will rid many businesses of short to medium term cash crunch
While the government has taken cognisance of the macro economic impact of the global crisis on the economy as a whole, at the micro level, the consequences on business are studied and pain points identified to develop practical strategies that will enable the government machinery to efficiently mitigate the repercussions.
The government support programme in Dubai, right from the early days of the pandemic has been focused on reduction in various government fees and doing away with deposits and bank guarantees that significantly addressed cash flow issues of businesses.
Benefit from continued exemption
The latest initiatives include exempting commercial establishments and hotels that did not benefit from the reduction in previous packages launched in 2020 from the market fees one time during 2021. While non-beach hotels and their restaurants are refunded 50 per cent from the hotel sales fee as well as the Tourism Dirham Fee, the tourism, entertainment, and events sector, stands to benefit from the continued exemption on the fees charged for postponement and cancellation of recreational and sports events and activities, including conferences and exhibitions.
As these measures come as a huge relief for the tourism, hospitality, entertainment and business events sectors, the decision to accept licence fees in monthly installments without the need to pay a 25 per cent down payment will rid many businesses of short to medium term cash crunch.
Going beyond the mere monetary value the stimulus scheme, the new set of measures comes as a reassurance and morale booster for the private sector, reinforcing government’s ability and willingness to support the economy in times of need.