The government has announced further initiatives to ease the burdens caused to the public due to COVID-19 restrictions.
During a press conference held Tuesday, President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih acknowledged that new restrictions would cause difficulties to the public, and announced significant deductions on utilities. The utility deductions include a 30% discount on water bills and a 40% discount on electricity bills for all households for the month of May. He further announced a 20% deduction on both water and electricity bills for all businesses.
Last year, the government gave a similar discount on utilities for the month of April and May.
President Solih reassured the public that countering the impacts of the pandemic is his administration’s current top priority and that all necessary government resources would be utilised to ensure public safety. In this regard, the president announced a stimulus loan package of MVR 375 million to cushion the impact of the current restrictions. The government will be offering financial aid in the form of relief loans to small businesses, and stimulus loans via the Bank of Maldives would also be announced in June.
The Maldives is currently experiencing an alarming surge in COVID-19 infections. While over 58,000 confirmed cases have been recorded to date, the month of May has been particularly devastating, with more COVID-19 deaths recorded in May 2021 than the combined number of all COVID-19 deaths in 2020