COVID 19 – Financial Aid Package for Businesses & Self-Employed

The Maltese Government announced the second set of financial measures aimed to support businesses for the implications of COVID-19

Liquidity measures

  • As already launched in the first set of aid, the Government once again committed to allow businesses to postpone the payments related to income tax, Vat and NI that are due in March and April dues. The Government will communicate at a later stage when the dues needs to be settled.

The measure is available both to employers and self-employed and in total €400m-€700m worth of payments are estimated to be deferred.

  • Government will grant bank guarantees worth of €900m to be utilised by businesses in situations such as new bank loans and moratorium on existing bank repayments.

€150m worth of bank guarantees are already committed through the National Development and Social Fund. Three months moratorium on personal and business loans can be requested though guarantees from this Fund.

Employment financial assistance

  • €350 per employee to businesses that have had employees on mandatory quarantine.
  • Grant of 2 days per week salary (based on monthly salary of €800) for persons employed with businesses that suffered complete suspension of operations such as accommodation, food and beverage, language schools and entertainment.

Such aid is also available to self-employed individuals operating in sectors that suffered complete suspension of operations.

  • Grant of 1 day per week salary (based on monthly salary of €800) for persons employed with businesses that suffered at least 25% drop in operations.
  • Persons whose full-time employment was terminated as from 9th March 2020 shall benefit from a temporary increase in their unemployment benefit of up to €800.
  • Persons with disability whose employment was stopped due to their vulnerability for COVID-19 and unable to work from home, shall be entitled for a monthly benefit of €800.
  • Families with children where both parents/guardians are employed in the private sector and both unable for telework will be entitled to €800/month for up to 2 months. This measure will make for the additional leave required for child-care.
  • Existing government housing subsidies shall increase for those families where one dependant had his/her employment terminated.

New employment procedures

  • All businesses who terminate an active employment contract will be denied applying for recruiting third-country national workers.
  • New applications for employment of third-country nationals will only be accepted for highly skilled works.
  • Existing third-country nationals whose employment has been terminated will be assisted to find an alternative job.
  • New service will be launched by Jobsplus to assist:
  1. o Persons whose employment was terminated;
  2. o Employers seeking recruits;
  3. o Third-country nationals for work permit queries.

Detailed implementation guidelines will be issued by the Government in due course. Government also announced that further measures can be launched to help enterprises during these challenging times.

We shall be closely following any developments and will communicate them once available. For any assistance on these matters you can contact us on [email protected].