Finance Minister Christos Staikouras did not rule out another extension to the suspension of outstanding debt payments beyond April, in statements to Thema FM radio station, if the economy has not recovered.
Speaking of the active regulations and their deadline extensions to help support businesses and jobs during the pandemic crisis, Staikouras said “this does not mean we cannot rule out reviewing the extension of the suspension [of payments] if this is necessary,” he said.
At this time, the ministry is discussing a programe – like “Gefyra” (Bridge) subsidies of loan installments related to a family’s primary home – for small and medium-sized enterprises and independent contractors who are harmed by the repercussions of the pandemic. This new program would provide subsidies for up to 9 months, based on the status of the loan and on specific income and asset fators.
He added that the deadline for the fifth returnable subsidy has been extended. The Finance ministry was expecting to subsidize nearly 400,000 businesses with a total of 1.5 billion euros, Staikouras said. The applications have exceeded 600,000 so far, but not all will be meeting the requirements, he pointed out.