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Areas General Services Presidency Consell unlocks €630K for local freelancers and small business

Consell unlocks €630K for local freelancers and small business

foto 2021 ajudes autonomsThe Consell de Formentera made public details today about €630,000 in assistance to help self-employed Formentera residents and locally-based small businesses weather fallout from Covid-19 restrictions. The money will come in equal parts by local and regional government, with details posted yesterday in the Official Gazette of the Balearic Islands (BOIB). The applications period is now open and all submissions must be received by the end of the day 19 April. The Consell and Govern balear plan to expand the initial €300,000 aid package pending signature of a second accord and plenary approval of a budget retooling in early April.

“The aim of this aid is to increase liquidity and keep small businesses operational, because they’ve been among the hardest hit during the public health crisis, and are crucial to Formentera’s economic and social fabric”, said Alejandra Ferrer, who pointed out that multilateral discussions leading to the current aid package had included local business owners — a configuration the premiere asserted was key to advocating for the specific needs of Formentera tradespeople, and one she pledged would remain unchanged during the talks around a second round of soon-to-be-announced assistance from the Govern balear.

Ferrer was joined at the presentation by deputy premiere and commerce and entrepreneurship chief Ana Juan and tax office chief Bartomeu Escandell, plus Josep Mayan, chairman of Formentera’s league of small- and medium-sized businesses (PIME); Juan Manuel Costa Escanellas, chairman of the Chamber of Commerce, and Lina Bustos, spokesperson for the Balearic Confederation of Business Groups (CAEB).

Ana Juan said discussions about who would receive the aid had included local business owners and insisted efforts had been made to bring the offer in line with the particularities and precise needs of Formentera’s freelancers and professionals. For instance, unlike in other places, aid on Formentera will be available to businesses with up to ten employees, and in a wide range sectors including artisans, tourism-related businesses, food service, retail, workshops and more.

For his part, Bartomeu Escandell said the expected add-on was designed to bring the assistance to as many freelancers and impresarios in as little time as possible.

Business representatives hailed the news and encouraged local small business owners to starting filling out their applications.

Funding between €1.5K and €7K
Three types of assistance have been established. The first totals €1,500 and is available to market merchants and freelance vendors without a physical shopfront who have paid freelancing dues at least three months from 14 March 2020 to January 2021. The second totals €2,500 and is available to businesses with a physical location and whose owners have paid business dues anywhere from three to six months. The third totals €3,500 and is available to businesses which have opened six months since emergency orders were enacted. In the first case, applicants (natural or legal persons alike) can receive no more than €1,500. However, in the second and third cases, they can receive up to €5,000 and €7,000 respectively if they have two establishments.

Applicants must have their workplace and tax domicile on the island to be eligible. Likewise, their annual average of employees must not exceed ten; annual turnover must remain under €600,000 and declared benefits in 2020 must not exceed €35,000 or invoicing in 2020 must have been at least 35% lower than in 2019. In addition, people who already received support as part of the one-off Covid-19 assistance package in July 2020 are not eligible.

Twenty working days to request aid online
To facilitate access and answer any questions, the Consell de Formentera is encouraging islanders to contact an information hotline at 971 32 10 87. Applicants have twenty working days from the day after the announcement of aid (up to and including 19 April) to make their request on the Virtual Citizen Information Office (OVAC). Complete information and details about terms will be posted to the Consell de Formentera website.

19 March 2021
Communications Department
Consell de Formentera


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