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Mitigating the consequences of the coronavirus pandemic on the Slovenian economy is one of the key objectives of the Government of the Republic of Slovenia when adopting measures.
Since the coronavirus outbreak, the Government of the Republic of Slovenia has been closely monitoring the situation at national, European and global levels. In order to control the situation and to mitigate the adverse consequences for the economy and the population in the long term, it has adopted a two-stage system by:
Measures adopted or proposed
Legal and natural persons can defer their repayment of loans for a period of 12 months
With the entry into force of the Act Regulating the Intervention Measure of Deferred Payment of Borrowers’ Liabilities, banks and savings banks will, for a period of 12 months, be able to defer the repayment of loans for a wide range of beneficiaries — companies, sole traders, farmers, associations, cooperatives and institutions, as well as for the self-employed and natural persons provided they are Slovenian citizens. Banks are obliged to grant deferrals to entities whose business operations were made impossible due to the ordinance.
Act Regulating the Intervention Measure to Reimburse Salaries and Contributions
The state will help employers who, due to the coronavirus pandemic, are unable to provide work to at least 30 per cent of their employees, who will also be put on temporary lay-off.
Employees who are temporarily laid off for a period that does not exceed three months will be entitled to salary compensation in the amount of 80% of the average salary received in the last three months. Their employers will be obliged to pay them compensation in the amount of 60% of this amount, while the state will cover 40%.
Employees in quarantine as imposed by the decision of the Minister of Health will also be entitled to up to 80% of the salary compensation, while this will be covered by the state in full.
The Act includes self-employed workers and allows them to defer their payment of social security contributions for April, May and June this year for a period of two years. Deferred contributions will be due by 31 March 2022 at the latest.
Working from home
Under the Employment Relationship Act, employers are allowed a certain degree of flexibility in the performance of work, and work processes can be organised as work from home.
The Government and SID bank will together address the liquidity problems of companies through new or supplemented measures in the total amount of approximately EUR 200 million and in the framework of the existing EUR 600 million earmarked for indirect corporate financing via banks.
In cooperation with the Slovene Enterprise Fund, the Ministry of Economic Development and Technology is currently preparing measures for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises in the total amount of EUR 115 million. These funds will be available on the market as of 20 March.
Meanwhile, the Ribnica Regional Development Fund will allow companies to swap state loans for loans with more favourable terms and for longer-term loans.
Companies in trouble
The Ministry of Economic Development and Technology currently has EUR 6 million available for loans and could, in agreement with the Ministry of Finance, mobilise another EUR 20 million under the guarantee scheme if needed.
Deferral of tax liabilities
In mitigating the impact of the coronavirus epidemic, business entities may also have recourse to the existing more favourable options to settle tax liabilities, namely to the deferral of tax payment for a maximum of 24 months or to the payment of tax in a maximum of 24 monthly instalments. The Act Regulating Intervention Measures in Public Finance, which the Government has already submitted to the National Assembly for approval, will enable the exercise of this option under more favourable and simpler terms.
Extended deadlines for the submission of documentation
With the entry into force of the Act Regulating Intervention Measures in Public Finance, taxpayers will have more time to submit their tax returns and annual reports. The deadlines for the submission of tax returns for self-employment tax prepayment and corporate income tax prepayment for last year will be moved from 31 March to 31 May at the latest. Consequently, the final deadline for compiling an informative calculation of personal income tax for 2019 will be extended by one month. The deadline for the submission of the 2019 annual reports to AJPES will also be extended until the end of May.
Promotion of tourism
The Slovenian Tourist Board has responded to the current unstable economic situation in the tourism sector by changing current calls for tenders and by adapting its activities on the emitting markets of Slovenian tourism.
Assistance in internationalisation
The ministry responsible for the economy is also planning to reduce the negative impacts by means of partially reimbursing the costs incurred by small and medium-sized enterprises arising from their planned participation in trade fairs abroad or another international event cancelled by the organiser amid the coronavirus pandemic. It will also cover the cost of attending a virtual fair.
Further measures are under consideration to assist the economy. Currently, the ministry is working with the Ministry of Finance to coordinate solutions to compensate businesses for the current loss of revenue, said State Secretary at the Ministry of Economic Affairs Simon Zajc. According to him, measures are already being drawn up to kick-start the economy after the health crisis passes.
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