The Fiji National Provident Fund’s COVID-19 Micro Business Assistance which is expected to help members set up new or boost existing micro-business ventures opens on Monday.
Specifically for FNPF members aged between 50 to 54 years, this relief allows them to access up to $10,000 from their general account balance.
Chief Executive Officer Viliame Vodonaivalu says this assistance would help members affected by COVID-19 to venture into income-generating activities.
He says this assistance is an extension of their unemployment assistance.
Vodonaivalu says they are encouraging segmented members to venture into commercial activities that can generate and sustain their livelihoods.
He says the impact of the pandemic has forced many members to seek income-generating projects and this relief will definitely help members who are nearing retirement to get the capital they need so they can continue to sustain themselves.
A key requirement for this relief is that members’ employment or livelihood would have been affected by COVID-19 and the minimum general account balance required is $1,035.
Members will be able to apply to start up a new business, for general business-related needs or to financially contribute towards an existing microbusiness. Members will have to ensure they provide the required documents such as business registration certificates or permits, as well as business plans, among other things.
These micro ventures should be earning less than $50,000 a year.
Funds will be paid through two modes – directly to members or indirectly to an approved lender.
Approved applications will be paid in two installments and the second payment will only be released once acquittals are provided for the first payment.
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