First and second financial aid packages - A recap
In the first and second financial aid packages launched earlier last week, the government announced various measures to aid business battle the economic slowdown resulting from the COVID-19 worldwide pandemic.
Here is a recap of all the support measures and fiscal assistance published so far;
Deferral of tax payments attributed to national insurance (social security contributions), income taxes and VAT falling due on March and April 2020;
Temporary increase in unemployment benefit of €800 for employees who suffered job losses as from 9th March 2020;
Fiscal incentives to businesses to support teleworking activities;
Grant of €350 per employee to businesses that have had employees on mandatory quarantine;
€750M in soft loans for businesses to finance operations;
€150M in bank guarantees;
€210M of funds to cover expenditure arising due to the COVID-19 outbreak;
Three-month moratorium for both personal and business loans;
The suspension of recruitment of third-country nationals with only highly-skilled applications being considered;
€800 monthly benefit (for up to two months) to families with school children and were both parents work, where due to the current situation, one of the parents was unable to work remotely and thus was required to temporary stop from work to take care of the children;
€800 monthly benefit to persons with disabilities who are particularly vulnerable to the virus and therefore had to stop working following the outbreak;
Increase in rent subsidies where a family member living in subsidised rental accommodation suffered termination due to the COVID-19 crisis;
Third financial aid package
Yesterday evening, Maltese Prime Minister Dr. Robert Abela announced the third financial package and measures in a bid to further the support towards businesses and employees adversely affected by the novel COVID-19 viral pandemic.
The third financial package is estimated to cost around €70M per month. The measures will apply retrospectively as from 9th March 2020 and the amount of support will be dependent on the extent to which the business in the respective sector has been hit.
Financial aid to critically hit sectors
Specific wholesale activities
Specific retail activities
Travel agencies, tour operators and related activities
Food and beverage sector
Rental and leasing of motor vehicles
Security and investigation activities
Service to buildings
Creative, arts and entertainment activities
Personal services activities
All business falling under one of the sectors listed, the government is financing up to €800 per month of each employee's salary. In cases where the salary exceeds the stipulated amount of €800, the employer is expected to pay the remainder of the salary. In cases where the employer is not able to cover the remainder part of the salary up to at least €1,200, the employer is obliged to notify the Department of Industrial and Employment Relations and an agreement will be reached with the involvement of the unions and the respective employees. This assistance also applies to part-time and self-employed individuals working in any of the listed sectors. Part-timers assistance will be calculated on a pro-rata basis deemed at a monthly salary of €500.
Financial aid to Less critically hit sectors
Part of the wholesale sector
Part of the retail sector
Business operating within these sectors will have one day's salary per week covered by the government. This is based on a monthly salary of €800 per employee. This measure will cover approximately 50,000 employees, costing an approximate of €17M per month and is applicable for both employed as well as self-employed individuals.
Do you have any questions?
As further details, including terms and conditions, are still emerging, further clarifications will need to be sought on the fiscal measures. We are continuing to follow the developments and will provide further details as these become available.
In the meantime, for any clarifications on how these measure impact your business/enterprise and for assistance in applying and benefiting from any of the above listed measures, you may contact us by sending us an email on email@example.com.