Poland wants to inject nearly 24 billion dollars (100 billion zloty) in liquidity to firms to counteract the effects of the Coronavirus lockdown of the economy, Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said on Wednesday.
‘The move should allow Poland to save 2 million to 5 million jobs,” he said.
Three-quarters of the programme will be aimed at micro firms as well as small and medium-sized enterprises
(SMEs), which employ up to 250 people.
A single micro firm (up to nine employees) can count on some 300,000 zloty in subsidies in a three-year timeframe, while SMEs (10 to 249 employees) may receive up to some 3.5 million zloty, Morawiecki said.
Up to three quarters of these subsidies will be non-repayable.
Any repayments will start only after the first year of the programme.
Large firms will also be allowed to benefit, provided they pay their taxes in Poland, Morawiecki said.
In order to receive aid, firms need to comply with just two conditions: not shut down and retain their employees, the official said.
Earlier on Wednesday, Poland’s rate-setting body, the Monetary Policy Council (MPC) cut the country’s benchmark interest rate by 50 basis points to 0.5 per cent, the lowest level in history, central bank NBP announced.
The move came just three weeks after an earlier 50 bps rate cut.
Prior to the March and April rate cuts, Poland’s benchmark interest rate had stood unchanged at the level of 1.5 per cent for five years.
This will enable the country return to its unprecedented period of economic growth, NBP Head Adam Glapinski said during the conference, making a reference to the famous phrase of former ECB chief Mario Draghi.
In mid-March, Poland announced a 212 billion zloty coronavirus economic package consisting of wage subsidies, loan guarantees and liquidity-supporting measures for firms, as well as new health care and investment spending.
For nearly four weeks now, public life in Poland has been drastically restricted by measures put in place to slow the spread of the novel Coronavirus.
Poland has so far confirmed 5,000 cases of the novel coronavirus, with 136 fatalities.
Edited By: Fatima Sule/Peter Ejiofor)
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