Financial package announced by the Government of Malta in order to minimise the effects of COVID-19
19 March 2020
Further to the measures previously announced by the Government of Malta to help minimise the effects of the current instability in relation to COVID-19, a financial package of €1.81 billion was announced by the Government on 18 March 2020 with a view to supporting families, businesses and the economy against the negative effects of COVID-19.
The following is a summary of the announced measures.
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Measures relating to the economy
- Liquidity injection into businesses of €1.6 billion, which shall consist of deferred tax payments estimated to amount to €400 - €700 million and €900 million in bank guarantees.
- The Government budget relating to health shall be increased by €35 million in order to fund any expenses in relation to COVID-19 (this amount will be increased as necessary).
- A moratorium period of up to three months may be requested for personal and business loans.
Measures relating to employment
- Businesses who have employees on mandatory quarantine shall receive a grant of €350 per employee.
- Employees of qualifying businesses (including self-employed persons) that have suspended their operations as a result of the decision of the Government to protect public health, are entitled to a grant equivalent to the salary of two days per week based on a monthly salary of €800. Where self-employed persons also have employees, they are entitled to a grant equivalent to the salary of three days per week based on a monthly salary of €800.
- Businesses (including self-employed persons) which have suffered from a decrease in their operations by at least 25% are entitled to a grant equivalent to one day per week based on €800 per month. Where self-employed persons also have employees, they are entitled to a grant equivalent to two days per week based on €800 per month.
- Individuals whose full-time employment has been terminated as of 9 March 2020, shall be entitled to a temporary benefit of up to €800 a month.
- With respect to third country nationals:
- All enterprise that terminate the employment contract of one of their employees shall be prohibited from offering an employment contract to third country nationals;
- Only applications for highly-skilled third country nationals shall be considered; and
- Third country nationals whose employment has been terminated shall be provided assistance in order to find alternative employment.
- Jobsplus shall provide assistance to Malta resident individuals and third country nationals whose employment has been terminated and shall also assist with work permits. Moreover, Jobsplus shall also provide assistance to employers with respect to recruitment of new employees.
- Families with children where both parents work and are unable to work remotely and therefore require leave to care for their children, shall be entitled to two months additional leave and shall be paid a benefit of €800 per month.
- Persons with disabilities who are unable to work from home and are unable to go to work due to health complications which may arise due to COVID-19, shall be entitled to a benefit of €800 per month.
- Rent subsidies shall be granted by the Government to qualifying persons whose employment has been terminated. Furthermore, rent subsidies granted by the Government shall increase for those families who already live in accommodation which is subsidised and where one family member has had their employment terminated.