Employers and Trade Unions Discuss with Economy Minister EU Anti-crisis Measure Money Distribution
August 13 (BTA) - Employers and unions discussed with the Economy Minister on Thursday how EU money would be allocated to anti-crisis measures. Companies will receive assistance so that they are better prepared for a new wave of coronavirus, Economy Minister Lachezar Borisov told reporters.
This meeting was called due to a decision of the Council of Ministers for indicative distribution of funds under the European initiative to combat the pandemic. The Economy Ministry is expected to allocate over 550 million leva under this initiative, Minister Borisov said. Some of the money is already available, and some is expected from the EU in the future, the Economy Ministry added.
The participants in the meeting agreed that there are small enterprises which the anti-crisis measures proposed so far have not reached. The indicative aid budget for these companies will amount to 80 million leva. It is still unclear whether under this measure they will be given to companies with an annual turnover of over 300,000 or over 500,000 leva, the Minister said. The maximum amount of aid for companies will be between 50,000 and 100,000 leva
Under a measure of the Innovation and Competitiveness Operational Programme, companies will receive between 15,000 and 75,000 leva, as the indicative budget is up to 82 million leva. These two measures will finance 100 per cent of the companies' costs.
Another other two measures will finance up to 80 per cent of the companies' activities. It is expected that money will be allocated for digitalization of the companies' work, including the purchase and maintenance of business management systems, the development of "green projects", innovation, environmental protection, the purchase of tangible fixed assets, as well as renewable energy sources.
''Huge declines in Bulgaria's economy are not expected in the next quarter, but we want these funds to be absorbed as quickly as possible so that the crisis can be more bearable,'' said the Minister in answer to a BTA question. He noted that the GDP decline for 2020 will most likely be less than seven per cent. RI/DT