• Jiji


The government will extend the application deadline for its COVID-19 relief programs for small businesses hit hard by the pandemic by one month, until Feb. 15, industry minister Hiroshi Kajiyama said Friday.

The deadline will be extended for a relief program offering up to ¥2 million paid in benefits to smaller companies, as well as a rent support program for such businesses.

The latest decision was made out of consideration for businesses unable to prepare the necessary documents in time for the original deadline, after the central government expanded its state of emergency over the pandemic to cover 11 prefectures.

“As some business operators may not be able to submit (applications) in time, because they may not receive necessary documents (from clients and others), we’ve decided to extend the deadline to Feb. 15,” Kajiyama told a news conference.

Those wanting to submit applications under the new deadline will be required to give their reasons by the end of this month.

The original application deadline for the two programs was set for Friday.

The central government expects to receive over 4 million applications for its cash relief program from smaller firms and sole proprietors, after introducing the initiative in May last year.

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