Coronavirus (COVID-19) updates from the Australian Government

Coronavirus SME Guarantee Scheme Phase 2


The Coronavirus Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) Guarantee Scheme Phase 2 provided SMEs (including sole traders and not-for-profits) with vital additional funding to help them get through the impact of Coronavirus, recover and invest for the future. Under the Scheme, the Government provided a 50 per cent guarantee to participating lenders to enhance their ability to extend credit to SMEs.

Phase 2 of the Scheme supported secured and unsecured loans for up to $1 million for terms of up to five years with a cap on interest rates. Phase 2 of the Scheme commenced on 1 October 2020 and ceased for loans on 30 June 2021.

To enable continued support for businesses in recovery, the Government announced the SME Recovery Loan Scheme, which is open to SMEs that received JobKeeper in the March quarter or were affected by the floods in NSW in March 2021. Loans under the SME Recovery Loan Scheme are available until 31 December 2021. To find out more, visit SME Recovery Loan Scheme.

The Coronavirus SME Guarantee Scheme Phase 1 provided SMEs with access to unsecured working capital loans of up to $250,000 to help them get through the impact of the Coronavirus.

Phase 1 commenced on 23 March 2020 and ceased for new loans on 30 September 2020. For more information on Phase 1, visit SME Guarantee Scheme Phase 1

Under the Show Starter Loan Scheme the Government provided a 100 per cent guarantee for eligible new loans taken out by arts and entertainment businesses to deliver new productions or events for a live audience. The Scheme ceased for loans on 30 June 2021.

The Scheme was delivered as part of the Coronavirus SME Guarantee Scheme.

Lenders who participated in the Show Starter Loan Scheme included:

  • ANZ
  • Commonwealth Bank of Australia
  • National Australia Bank Limited
  • Westpac Banking Corporation

Scheme documentation includes:

Legislative Rules
Treasurer’s Delegation
Show Starter Loan Scheme - Scheme Rules
Show Starter Loan Scheme - Deed of Guarantee
Show Starter Loan Scheme – Reporting Standard
Show Starter Loan Scheme – Enforcement Authorisation

Further information on the Show Starter Loan Scheme is available from the Office for the Arts.