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Commission: €1.14bn to Support Greece’s Covid-hit SMEs

Approximately 90,000 small- and medium- sized enterprises in Greece will be able to tap into a total of 1.14 billion euros in funds released this week by the European Commission to address the impact of Covid-19.

Of the 1.14 billion euros available, some 600 million euros will be distributed in the form of grants, the remaining in the form of reimbursable assistance (financial tools).

“We stand by all member states in their efforts to overcome the health and economic crises that affect our continent and the world,” said Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms Elisa Ferreira following the modification and approval of thirteen 2014-2020 regional operational programs and two national operational programs in Greece.

“The Coronavirus Response Investment Initiative (CRII) adopted under cohesion policy provides extensive flexibility so that member states can mobilize funding to address the current challenges. I welcome Greece’s determination to take swift action to support the economy, particularly SMEs, and employment,” she added.

The 1.14-billion-euro EU cohesion policy funds are aimed at financing actions supporting Greek SMEs through the “Competitiveness, Entrepreneurship and Innovation” operational program.

In an attempt to mitigate the repercussions of the coronavirus pandemic on local businesses, Greek authorities have launched since April four support schemes: loan guarantees to businesses through the creation of a guarantee fund for working capital loans; interest subsidy of existing SME loans; interest subsidy of new SME working capital loans; and repayable advance scheme in the form of grants to SMEs.

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