Pakistan ranks 3rd in the government support provided to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to mitigate the impact of coronavirus pandemic.
According to a recently launched survey report titled “Impact of Covid-19 on SMEs” conducted online by Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA), Asian Development Bank Institute (ADBI) and Asian Productivity Organisation (APO), Pakistan has been ranked on 3rd number in providing government support to small and medium enterprises in order to alleviate the coronavirus impacts.
The online survey was administered in August 2020 and lasted till September 2020, in which 236 SMEs from Pakistan participated, conducted by ADBI and APO in other countries from the region including Indonesia, India, Bangladesh, Malaysia, Vietnam, Mongolia and Laos.
The report of the survey further reveals that the majority of enterprises in Pakistan faced 82 percent cash flow and 65 percent raw material shortage. Whereas, 11.44 percent of SMEs in Pakistan expect their sales revenue to increase as compared to 2019, while 12.29 percent of respondent enterprises expect their sales revenue to remain the same.
Moreover, Pakistan has been said to be the best performer in the region, as per the report. The country performed well in terms of the percentage of enterprises, with only 36.44 percent respondents reporting a significant decline in domestic demand. In comparison, enterprises in Bangladesh with 72.29 percent , 42.52 percent in Indonesia, 63.5 percent in Malaysia, and 50 percent in India reported a significant drop in domestic demand.
The electricity support package of the government also played a significant role in supporting SMEs directly during the struggling times with 27 percent respondents in Pakistan reporting that they received support through payment of utility bills.
However, respondents in other countries reported different areas of support received, such as new bank loans or deferred payment of bank loans.