Poland to pump EUR 6.5 bln into Covid-stricken sectors

Mateusz Marek/PAP

The Polish government will put an additional PLN 30 billion (EUR 6.5 billion) into assistance for lockdown-hit businesses, the prime minister announced on Thursday.

"We want to release further funds, up to PLN 30 billion, to save companies," Mateusz Morawiecki told a press conference, adding that the aid will now cover even more sectors.

So far the government has spent some PLN 200 billion (EUR 43.3 billion) on supporting Polish businesses during the coronavirus crisis, Morawiecki also said.

"The pandemic is not easing, that's why we're launching new programmes," he added. "Jobs, jobs and once again jobs."

The government will also prop up ailing retailers at shopping centres that have had to close down due to government restrictions.

The retailers' rents will be reduced by 80 percent during the lockdown period, and by 50 percent in the three months following the lifting of restrictions, Morawiecki announced.

Jaroslaw Gowin, a deputy prime minister, said the financial aid will cover as many as 60 sectors in April, including 16 new ones.

"The amount (of aid) will total PLN 7 billion (EUR 1.51 billion) in April," Gowin said.

"For comparison, in March we offered support of PLN 3 billion (EUR 0.65 billion) to more than 40 sectors," he said.