‘Extraordinary times’ call for ‘extraordinary measures’, stated Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez in his address yesterday.
“The measures outlined today aim to protect everyone in society, from families to businesses, so that no-one is left behind.”
During his public press conference, he urged companies to refrain from dismissing employees. He promised struggling firms access to loans to ensure liquidity and cashflow, enabling them to continue paying their staff and keep their businesses afloat. “The State will be the guarantor of these operations,” he stated. Both individuals and businesses would also have access to loans, even if they didn’t previously meet requirements, he confirmed.
He also outlined tax breaks for the self-employed and small and medium sized firms (SMEs/PYMES) allowing them to defer social security payments, as well as financial help for salaried individuals who have to reduce their workday (up to 100%) to care for children or elderly relatives.
Other measures include delaying mortgage payments for individuals and the self-employed (autonomos), who may be struggling keep up with payments because they have either lost their jobs, or suffering from huge losses resulting from the COVID-19 crisis. As well as ensuring that people don’t lose their homes, Sánchez has also guaranteed its citizens access to basic, essential supplies, such as electricity, water and gas, including telecommunications services.
These measures are expected to help an estimated 100,000 workers who face temporary layoffs, resulting from the country’s Coronavirus crisis and lockdown.
Sánchez also confirmed that the Government would continue to fine-tune the relief packages, depending on the economy’s needs, over the coming days and weeks.
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