The U.S. Small Business Administration has approved over 700,000 economic injury disaster loans nationwide, totaling $55 billion. In the Northern Marianas, 49 loans have been approved as of May 30, with the amount totaling $3,282,800.
SBA is providing the low-interest federal disaster loan as working capital for small businesses in the CNMI that have been substantially hit due to COVID-19. Up to $2 million in economic injury disaster loan may be availed of by qualified small businesses, private non-profit organizations, small agricultural cooperatives, and small aquaculture enterprises impacted by the pandemic since Jan. 31, 2020, to help with their operating expenses.
To avail of the economic injury disaster loan, small businesses may apply online, or download applications at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. The deadline to apply is Dec. 21, 2020.
As for loans under the Paycheck Protection Program, SBA has approved 360 loans in the CNMI, totaling $36,013,357. This is part of the 4.4 million loans, totaling $511 billion approved by SBA nationwide, the latest as of May 23.
SBA’s Paycheck Protection Program helps small businesses affected by the COVID-19 keep their employees. Announced in mid-April, the program provides eligible employers the opportunity to receive a federally-guaranteed loan to cover all of the cost, provided they keep all their employees on payroll for up to eight weeks.
Money from the program can also be used by small businesses to pay rent, mortgage interest, or utilities. Loan payments will also be deferred for six months, and no collateral or personal guarantees are required.