Definitive Guide to increased measures associated with coronavirus in Greece issued

A concise guide issued via civil protection Greece for individuals and businesses directly financially impacted by the measures introduced.

22 helpful questions and answers on all new coronavirus measures and settings



Business & Employee Support, Government Measures, New Avoidance Measures, Patient Facilitation, Specific CT Arrangements

Athens, 19 March 2020

New business and employee support measures

1. What was the first package of measures announced by the Government last week ?

Last week, the first set of measures by the Ministries of Finance, Development and Investment, Labor and Social Affairs was announced, moving in three directions:

1. Strengthening the health system by at least EUR 200 million in addition to the existing budget of the Ministry of Health.

2. The possibility of a special purpose permit, the cost of which will be shared between the State, the enterprise and the employee, as well as the legislation on access to work facilities, through flexibility in working hours and the facilitation of distance work.

3. The possibility of suspending the payment of tax and insurance liabilities to companies closed by a state decision, as well as the installments for adjustments made to the tax authorities and insurance funds.

2. What does the second package of measures include now ?

The Ministries of Finance, Development and Investment, Labor and Social Affairs have announced to businesses and employees affected by the following measures:

1. Suspensions of taxes and levies on businesses, freelancers and self-employed persons, as well as installments for settlement of past debts to the tax authorities and insurance funds.

2. Business financing in the form of a refund of a total of EUR 1 billion.

3 . Banks lend € 2 billion in new business loans through European Investment Bank

4. Establish a guarantee mechanism for lending to small and medium-sized enterprises, up to EUR 3 billion, and for investment loans of up to EUR 500 million.

5. An increase of € 250 million in funding from the Hellenic Development Bank’s Entrepreneurship Fund for new loans to corporations affected by the coronavirus with a 100% interest rate subsidy for two months.

6. Interest rate subsidy for up-to-date business loans for 3 months for sectors of the economy that are directly affected by the coronavirus.

7. Compensation from the State Budget of 800 euros for employees temporarily suspended under full employment insurance.

8 . Aid of 800 euros to self-employed, self-employed and self-employed individuals affected, for the period 15 March-30 April.

9 . Explicit prohibition of dismissal of employees in companies suspended by order of a public authority. In the case of redundancies, they will be considered invalid.

10 . Job retention clause in all businesses that were not suspended, as a condition of suspension of insurance and tax liabilities and the use of exceptional financial support tools.

11. Extension of the regular unemployment benefit payment, as well as the long-term unemployment benefit and unemployment benefit to self-employed and self-employed persons, for a further two months.

12 . 40% reduction for March and April of professional rent paid by companies that are obliged to stop their business. The same applies to workers whose employment contract is suspended, since this is their first residence.

13. Reduction of VAT to 6%, from 24%, to products needed to protect against coronavirus.

14. Suspension of the revision of the real property values. The 2020 ENFIA will be based on the current regime and the new objective values ​​will come into force next year.

15 . Immediate repayment of all overdue liabilities of the State to citizens and businesses, up to 30,000 euros.

16. Suspension of bank payments by the banks by September for coherent businesses.

3. What exactly is foreseen for business tax and levy suspensions ?

They concern companies belonging to the sectors which are severely affected by the emergence and spread of coronavirus, provided that they maintain their existing jobs. For these businesses, the payment of interest-free March, VAT, certified debts to tax authorities is suspended for 4 months, that is until July 31. or Audit Centers and for installments relating to past debt arrangements. In the case of insurance funds, the payment of insurance contributions for the month of February is suspended for 3 months, with no interest and surcharges on affected employees. It also suspends the payment of installments for past debt settlement to insurance funds for 3 months for all affected companies.

4. After the expiry of the suspension period, will the debtors have to pay a lump sum?

With the current data yes, but the issue is being considered and the optimal solution will be given, depending on the intensity and extent of the problems.

5. How will businesses be financed with a refundable deposit?

This is a new measure with an extended repayment period and grace period for all businesses severely affected by the emergence and spread of coronavirus and will total 1 billion euros. The financing of any business in this form will take into account the reduction in its turnover, as well as the wage and non-wage costs of its employees. In this case, the preservation of existing jobs is a prerequisite. It will be given within the next two months via Taxisnet, ie it will go directly to the business accounts.

6. Apart from the repayable advance, what else is there to enhance the liquidity of the companies?

In addition, € 1.8 billion will be earmarked through the Special European Investment Fund set up last week to address the effects of coronavirus spread. The use of the resources concerned will be immediate.

Overall, there will be further enhancement of business liquidity by optimally combining funds from the Public Investment Program, the NSRF, the Hellenic Development Bank and the European Investment Bank Group, in order to ensure maximum leverage. Specifically, it provides:

Interest rate subsidy for up-to-date business loans for 3 months for the sectors of the economy that are directly affected by the coronavirus. Should the crisis continue, the measure may be extended further.

In consultation with the European Commission, for the start-up period of the economy, a guarantee mechanism for lending to small and medium-sized enterprises up to EUR 3 billion will be implemented.

The European Investment Bank will grant banks € 2 billion in liquidity for new business loans.

In collaboration with the European Investment Bank Group, a guarantee mechanism for investment loans of up to EUR 500 million is being set up.

The Hellenic Development Bank’s Entrepreneurship Fund is being simplified and its resources increased by 250m euros to provide new loans to corporations affected by the coronavirus with a 100% interest rate subsidy for two years.

7. How will employees be supported by businesses that are closed by government order?

All employees for which their contract of employment is temporarily suspended due to the suspension of the operation of a state-owned company will receive 800 euros in compensation from the state budget in the first ten days of April.

This measure concerns about 500,000 workers, at a cost of about 400 million euros. The allowance covers a period of 45 days, from mid-March to April 30, and will be tax-free.

In addition, the State fully covers the insurance, pension and health rights of workers and their social security contributions on the basis of their total nominal wages. The budgetary cost of March and April, for some 500,000 employees, is about 450m euros.

At the same time, for these employees, the payment of the March tax liabilities for 4 months and the insurance contributions for the month of February are suspended for 3 months, with no interest and surcharges.

8. Does the 800 euro allowance also cover part-time workers?

It covers every employee in companies closed by government order, either full-time or part-time, under a contract of employment deposited in the “Work” system of the Ministry of Labor.

In the companies that are closed by their own decision, employers are still required to pay salaries to employees.

9. How will employees who receive it receive compensation?

They will be asked to fill in a statement on an electronic platform set up by the Ministry of Labor and register their bank account there. The compensation will be credited directly to the employees. Employers will report to the “Erganis” system, in a special section to be created, employees who worked in a company that terminated its operation with a state mandate.

10. When is the obligation to maintain jobs and how is it controlled?

Yesterday it was banned to dismiss an employee in a company suspended by order of a public authority, and would be considered void if it took place. Business compliance will be monitored through the Ministry of Labor’s “Work” system.

11. How will the unemployed be helped?

It is envisaged to extend the regular unemployment benefit, as well as the long-term unemployment benefit and unemployment benefit to self-employed and self-employed persons, for a further two months, to those unemployed with the relevant entitlement to benefit on 31/3/2020.

12. How will freelancers, self-employed and sole proprietors in sectors with a large turnover decrease due to the coronavirus crisis ?

First, all tax liabilities, payable in March, are deferred for 4 months.

In addition, for the self-employed, self-employed professionals and sole proprietors affected (eg lawyers affected by the closure of courts) for the period 15 March – 30 April, an aid of 800 euros will be given at the beginning of April. This aid applies to the above.

It is also foreseen to suspend payment of insurance contributions for freelancers and self-employed, for the month of February, for 3 months, without interest and surcharges, for the sectors affected.

13. Are the 800 euro self-employed, self-employed and self-employed individuals entitled to compensation in the above case part-time employed as employees entitled to compensation ?

If they have no other full-time employment, they are entitled to compensation.

14. Will the owner of more than one individual business affected by the coronavirus crisis receive more than one compensation?

No, they will receive a compensation of 800 euros.

15. How will businesses affected by the coronavirus crisis pay their rent and how their employees paying rent for their first home will be facilitated?

It is fair to divide the burden of this difficult situation between tenants and landlords. Thus, for businesses which are obliged to stop their business due to the spread of the coronavirus, it will be provided by law that they will pay 60% of the rent of the commercial property, if they rent it, for the months of March and April.

The same applies to employees of undertakings who are compulsorily ceasing their activity as a result of the spread of coronavirus and whose employment contract is suspended, since this is their first residence. Paying 60% of the rent instead of 100% will have no legal effect on the tenant.

For the owners of real estate in the above cases, it is foreseen to suspend payments of their tax liabilities and payment of installments of partial payment of established debts, for 4 months.


16. What about the government’s arrears to individuals?

The Independent Public Revenue Office proceeds with immediate repayment of all outstanding liabilities to citizens and businesses, refunding up to € 30,000 in all cases under review. Since February 25, the date of the first Legislative Act, until March 13, 218 million euros have been returned.

7. How will the banking system deal with the financial consequences?

Banks are already suspending until September the bankruptcy payments for coherent businesses. The facility relates to legal entities belonging to sectors directly affected by the current crisis. However, banks must also intervene in other cases for natural persons as well. At the same time, with the help of financial instruments, business liquidity should be enhanced through banks.

18. What about post-dated checks?

The issue will be addressed immediately.

19. Measures for the State The 9 measures taken by the Ministry of State for the State

1. Facilitating all working parents with children up to 15 years of age with special-purpose leave. About 15,000 thousand employees are already using this license.

2. Special leave is granted to all public employees who are most at risk as they already have severe diseases such as lung disease, heart disease, diabetes mellitus, cancer or are transplanted. These workers must stay at home and allow them to work remotely if they wish. We are introducing a special purpose sick leave for all employees who have been given a home restriction directive without having to attend a health committee.

3. All civil servants have access to the e-presence platform via their taxis codes and can therefore participate in teleconferences and remote communication with their bosses or other employees working in their service. At the same time, the Ministry of Digital Governance is preparing, with priority for the Ministries of Finance and Home Affairs, the ability to operate remotely to access remote computers.

4. Each Ministry has prepared, following instructions, its own contingency plan so that it can operate the services absolutely necessary if necessary in the coming days. He is already implementing a timetable.

5. We qualify all over the public to serve the public by telephone and online communication. Emergency cases will only be served by appointment. This will also apply to the CFPs. in a very few days.

6. We postpone every two months to the State for employee and citizen requests, as well as administrative appeals. It is recalled that the deadline for applications for undeclared sqm has already been postponed to June 30 this year.

7. We have ensured the uninterrupted operation of the Municipalities and the Regions, as well as their legal entities, by a meeting of all colleges by videoconference or by conference. Instructions have been given for the uninterrupted operation of critical OTA services.

8. We provided local government with an extraordinary financial support of € 15 million for the procurement of individual protection measures. The mayors and the governors have the possibility of direct procurement of supplies related to the coronavirus treatment.

9. The non-functioning KAPI and kindergarten staff are included in the “Help at Home” program to help support our older fellow citizens in need.

Take new non-transmission measures

20. What other measures do you take to prevent the spread of the virus?

Public assemblies of more than ten people with a fine of 1,000 euros per person and per case are prohibited from today and strong recommendations are made for the private sector. Also, public gatherings with 10 or more people are strongly discouraged. In all cases all hygiene and distance rules between persons must be respected. Citizens are also strongly urged to stay in their homes to avoid contact with people outside their immediate family. Out-of-home traffic should be limited to the minimum and for very specific reasons and to the extent necessary to serve vital needs only.



21. What measures does EOPYY take to facilitate patients?

EOPYY takes the following measures.

1. Doctors are given the opportunity to issue repeated prescription medications by 30/6/2020 to vulnerable groups of the population.

2. Patients receiving High Cost Drugs (CVD) from EOPYY Pharmacies and belonging to vulnerable groups may designate a person to receive their medicines with a simple statement of responsibility that does not require a visa.

3. In the coming days, the scheduled delivery of High Cost Medicines (by appointment) will commence at the EOPYY central pharmacy in Maroussi and the service will then be available in all Agency pharmacies.

4. It is possible to submit electronic submissions for special treatment electronic consultations by certified (non-contracted) therapists through the Agency’s online applications (eDAPY Open) without paying the insured.

5. Extends the date of submissions (eDAPY and physical file dispatch) of all EOPYY Health Service Provider contributors for the month of February until 31/03/2020.


22. What measures have been taken to restrict traffic in the CT of the islands and what about closed centers?

There is already a drastic restriction of the movement of residents to the Reception and Identification Centers of the islands. Specifically:

1. Those arriving after March 1 remain outside the existing CTs and within the next few days will be transferred to closed structures in mainland Greece.

2. The transition of those residing in CTs to urban centers to meet their needs will be controlled. There will be a one hour shift per person per family to neighboring urban centers from 7 in the morning and 7 in the evening. Coordination and control will be carried out by ELAS, and their transition will be carried out only by means of public transport.

3. The process of converting the Kos and Leros CTs, immediately following a document by the South Aegean Region, into closed structures begins immediately.

4. The process of completing the new Samos Indoor Center is accelerated to a lesser extent than the original design, following a recent City Council decision, while closing the open structure in Vathi.

5. The development process is already underway within the CTUs of specialized health units that include clinics, isolation facilities for further prevention, and treatment of any cases of coronavirus.

6. All visits by individuals / entities and their actions within the Reception and Identification Centers and the host structures have already been suspended. Only those who have a job are allowed entry.

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