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Gov’t disburses $1.2M in incentives to SMEs affected by Hurricane Fiona

The governor of Puerto Rico and the Department of Economic Development (DDEC, in Spanish) delivered approximately 80 incentives to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Puerto Rico affected by Hurricane Fiona, of which $1.2 million has already been disbursed and 265 checks have been delivered to entrepreneurs, particularly in the southern zone.

For these incentives, $15 million was designated, including $10 million that Gov. Pedro Pierluisi added to the funds that the DDEC allocated.

About 40% of the 10,000 applications filed correspond to businesses from the southern and southwestern municipalities.

“We know first-hand the needs that our small businesses are going through after the passage of Hurricane Fiona,” said DDEC Secretary Manuel Cidre.

“We deliver these disbursements to help mitigate the situations they are facing in their businesses, and we continue to work to reach as many businesses as possible in the shortest possible time,” said Cidre.

Of the 20,000 accounts registered in the recovery website and in the visits made by agency personnel to 30 municipalities, 10,000 SMEs filed the documents.

Of these, 73% correspond to businesses with fewer than five employees and 45% have been in operation for less than three years.

Of them, 46% represents the services sector, 25% the food and beverage sector, and the rest retail trade and manufacturing.

The period to submit applications ended Oct. 7.

The evaluation to grant funds took into consideration the location of the business, the need, the sales volume, and gave priority to entrepreneurs whose businesses are in the areas that got the greatest impact from the hurricane.

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This story was written by our staff based on a press release.

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