Well-known investor and chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, Warren Buffett, has urged Congress to increase aid to small businesses as they continue to struggle through an economic shutdown fighting the coronavirus epidemic.
“It’s an economic war,” Buffett told CNBC’s Becky Quick.Squawk b .x, “Speaking to Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon about helping small businesses. In particular, Buffett called on legislators to expand the Paycheck Protection Program.
“I think there are millions of small-business people in the country … just renew the PPP and get us to the end of the tunnel,” Buffett said. Buffett said. “A lot of industries shut down when we went to World War II; everything went into defense production. Well, we’ve shut down a lot of people in this specially motivated recession and others are getting richer.”
The window to apply for PPP loans has closed earlier this year, despite funding remaining in the program. However, Congress has been stalled for months in negotiations for new government assistance, putting pressure on businesses, especially small ones.
Late Monday night, a bipartisan group of legislators unveiled a $ 908 billion fiscal stimulus package. The proposal almost includes 300 billion to support small businesses, Including restaurants and entertainment venues.
Small businesses struggle to stay afloat during epidemics, especially during restaurants, as social distance restrictions force them to limit capacity in their establishments. Some businesses have been forced to close temporarily due to these limitations and lack of stimulus – and in some cases permanently.
Without additional assistance to small businesses, Congress is in the process of “destroying the dreams of tens of thousands of people,” Buffett said. “Congress should act.”
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