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Greece’s Covid-hit F&B Sector to Get €330m in Aid

Photo source: Athens Chamber of Tradesmen

Photo source: Athens Chamber of Tradesmen

The Greek government announced on Thursday that it would be subsidizing the country’s food and beverages (F&B) sector with 330 million euros in aid to assist recovery after Covid-19

Companies ready to re-open will be able to take out 100,000 euros in start-up capital under certain conditions.

The amount taken out will be non-refundable if the conditions are met and should be spent by December 2021.

The 330 million euros out of ESPA funds will towards subsidies for the purchase of raw materials necessary in the first two or three months of re-starting operations.

Presenting the stimulus plan to F&B services providers on Thursday, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said the sector had already received 1 billion euros in aid.

“To have a sense of the amounts spent on the F&B industry, let me point out that about 65,000 unique businesses out of the approximately 77,000 businesses in the industry, have participated in one or more of the Refundable Advance rounds. The F&B industry has received amounts approaching 1 billion euros. And out of the 410,000 employees in the industry, approximately 260,000 were put at some point on furlough, the state allocated 720 million in compensation to supplement their salaries,” he said.

Meeting of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis with F&B services providers. Photo source: @PrimeMinisterGR

Besides very small, small, and medium-sized F&B services, funding will also be made available to franchise and seasonal businesses under certain payment conditions.

The government said applications for funding can be submitted through the website through July 31, 2021.

The amount for companies set up in 2019 or 2020, will be assessed based 2019 turnover or on number of days in operation.

Size of support cannot exceed 100,000 euros per tax payer.

More specifically, requirements for subsidy are:

– companies that reported a reduction greater than or equal to 30 percent of annual 2020 turnover in relation to 2019 

– for companies established in 2019, the decline in turnover is calculated according to equal number of operating days

– companies established in 2020 

– F&B companies that were under construction in 2019 and turned revenue-making in 2020 

– F&B businesses that are obliged to submit periodic VAT returns.

Assessment of applications will be immediate and disbursement of funds will follow after approval of application.

Development & Investments Minister Adonis Georgiadis said the government wanted to ensure that all F&B businesses remain open and ready “for the next day”.

Speaking on behalf F&B providers, Giorgos Kavvathas, president of the  

Panhellenic Federation of Restaurant Enterprises (POESE), said the effectiveness of the funding will depend on how quickly it is distributed to businesses.

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About the Author
Chicago-born and raised, Maria Paravantes has over two decades of journalistic experience covering tourism and travel, gastronomy, arts, music and culture, economy and finance, politics, health and social issues for international press and media. She has worked for Reuters, The Telegraph, Huffington Post, Billboard Magazine, Time Out Athens, the Athens News, Odyssey Magazine and, among others. She has also served as Special Advisor to Greece’s minister of Foreign Affairs, and to the mayor of Athens on international press and media issues. Maria is currently a reporter, content and features writer for GTP Headlines.

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