Covid-19: Microfinance Companies Decry Impact On Business
More businesses in the country continue to complain about the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on their operations.
The latest to openly complain about their challenges is the Ghana Association of Microfinance Companies which says its operations in terms of patronage and other related activities are grinding to a halt as a result of the pandemic.
Among the many challenges, the group says persons who have contracted loans from them are unable to payback thereby leaving them in severe problems.
In an interview with Citi News, President of the association, Lambert Osei Kofi said government’s intervention is needed to save their businesses.
“Our business is typically a cash-type of business. We are microfinance companies mostly into deposit-taking and granting of loans. These things we do by cash. With the virus and its associated lockdown effect, we are unable to give loans because our customers are virtually not available. The loans we have given too we are finding it difficult to recover them. Sometimes when you go and people are crying to you, you are unable to recover your loans. Our revenues have been badly affected. We are unable to call our staff back so there are also job losses”, he said.
The financial implications led to some staff losing their jobs with others forced to take salary cuts.
This is because the announcement of the partial restriction saw many businesses in the formal sector close down some of their branches and reducing their operation hours.
Some companies have already laid-off casual workers and are preparing to cut down on the number of permanent staff.
According to them, it was no longer prudent to continue operations when the numbers have dropped drastically; while they still pay salaries, bills and taxes.
With the announcement of the ease of the restrictions however, some formal businesses started opening closed branches.