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Slovak gov’t drafts ‘first-aid’ economic package due to coronavirus

Slovakia’s government has drafted a "first-aid" package of economic measures worth EUR 1.5 billion per month (1% of GDP) to help businesses, the self-employed and employees affected by the coronavirus lockdown, Prime Minister Igor Matovič announced, according to the News Agency of the Slovak Republic (TASR). 

Prime Minister Igor Matovič, seen here during the 2020 parliamentary elections on February 29. Photo by Kollar Peter/Shutterstock.com

The state is planning to refund 80% of salaries received by people employed in facilities that have been obliged to close. Compensation will also be offered to the self-employed and employees depending on the drop in revenues of the affected businesses.

In addition, Matovič said EUR 500-million bank guarantees will be provided per month to allow banks to refund businesses’ expenditures under advantageous conditions.

Quarantined people and parents staying at home with their children will receive 55% of their gross salaries. Meanwhile, businesses that have suffered a more than 40%-drop in revenues will be able to delay payroll deductions for their staff and advance corporate tax payments.

According to Deputy Prime Minister and Economy Minister Richard Sulík, dozens of other detailed minor measures are still in the frame. Slovakia, which has a population of 5.5 million, has so far reported 336 cases of coronavirus and is ramping up testing, TASR noted.