The European Commission has approved financial support worth €5.2 billion for Czech companies affected by the coronavirus.
The aid, in the form of a loan guarantee scheme, is intended primarily for larger companies that significantly contribute to Czech exports. Czech businesses with exports that represent at least one-fifth of their annual sales revenues will qualify for the support.
Through the guarantee scheme, the government will be able to make it easier for these companies to obtain loans, helping them to overcome difficult economic circumstances.
“The measure will help these businesses continue their activity during and after the coronavirus outbreak. We continue to work in close cooperation with the Member States to find workable solutions to mitigate the economic impact of the coronavirus outbreak in line with EU rules,” commented Vice-President of the European Commission Margrethe Vestager on the approval of the Czech request for the guarantee scheme.
The European Commission relaxed state aid guidelines within the series of coronavirus measures in mid-March to help member states with financing health care and the companies most affected by the crisis. Since then, countries have been able to provide financial assistance to the private sector in a manner that is not usually permitted.
Brussels has already approved more than a hundred such applications from member states. In April, the European Commission approved a billion koruna (€37 million) aid package for Czech small and medium-sized enterprises that produce medical and protective equipment essential for fighting the coronavirus.