Important information for business on Coronavirus

Support for preservation of jobs

When an emergency situation or quarantine is declared, remote work is not always possible, so in complicated situations employers may announce downtime or partial downtime, and the State is ready to contribute to the payment of wages to employees.

When an enterprise declares inactivity due to an emergency or quarantine, the worker shall receive at least the minimum monthly salary and shall not be required to arrive to work. Currently, the minimum monthly salary makes EUR 607 gross or EUR 437 net.

The costs incurred by employers will be reimbursed by the Employment Service in the form of a subsidy to the employer. Subsidies during downtime because of quarantine will be available to companies, non-governmental organisations and associations that employ individuals with disabilities and other supported groups. Only budgetary institutions will not be eligible for subsidies.


Amounts of the State subsidies:

• 70 % of the employee’s salary, up to a maximum of EUR 910.5 gross. Obligation to maintain the place of employment for at least 6 months.

• 90 % of the employee’s salary, up to a maximum of EUR 607 gross. Obligation to maintain the place of employment for at least 3 months.

This means that if an employer decides to pay a higher proportion of the salary to the employee, the State will also contribute more by increasing the subsidy ceiling to 1.5 of the minimum wage.
If the employer decides to pay less, the State will contribute without exceeding one minimum wage.
Social enterprises employ workers that belong to target groups, mainly people with different types of disabilities, as well as older workers or formerly long-term unemployed. Their wages are subsidised by the State, as is the case of workers taking part in supported employment  tools.

Subsidy rates for social enterprises during downtime according to the target groups of workers:

• Severe degree of disability, 25 % and lower capacity for work or a high level of special needs: 75 % of the salary, up to a maximum of EUR 607 gross.

• Average degree of disability, 30 % - 40 % capacity for work or a moderate level of special needs: 60 % of the salary, up to a maximum of EUR 607 gross.

• Low degree of disability, 45-55 % capacity for work or a low level of special needs: 60 % of the salary, up to a maximum of EUR 607 gross.

• An individual above 50 and registered with the Employment Service: 60 % of the salary, up to a maximum of EUR 607 gross.

• A long-term unemployed with a period of unemployment of more than two years: 60 % of the salary, up to a maximum of EUR 607 gross.

Allowance to self-employed individuals

An allowance of a fixed amount will be paid from the Guarantee Fund to self-employed individuals who have paid social security contributions for at least 3 months during the last year period prior to the declaration of the emergency or quarantine.

The amount of the allowance will be equal to the amount of the current year’s minimum consumption needs, i.e. EUR 257 per month. The allowance will be available from the Employment Service, but it will not be paid to those self-employed individuals who are also employed under an employment contract.

Economic and financial instruments

The Government plans to dedicate 10 % of the national gross domestic product (GDP) to implementing economic and financial instruments, amounting to EUR 5 billion.

OBJECTIVE: Contribute to the preservation of jobs and income
AMOUNT: EUR 500 million
INSTRUMENTS:

• State support in cases of downtimes and partial downtimes. The employee allowance shall be not less than the minimum monthly salary.

• Sickness benefits for carers of children and persons with disabilities during quarantine in educational establishments or in social care and employment centres.

• To pay EUR 257/month to self-employed residents who have paid social security contributions when quarantine prevents them from carrying out their activities.

• Extend the provisions of the social protection programme for art creators and provide additional funds for the implementation of the programme.

• To extend the deferral period for payments of residential loans (excluding interest) from 3 to 6 months in the form of a state guarantee for those who have lost their jobs.

• Make it possible to defer the contributions or pay them by installments for electricity and natural gas to UAB Ignitis.

• Recommend that municipalities should offer a possibility to defer public utility payments and payments for heat energy or pay them by installments.

OBJECTIVE: Help businesses to keep liquid
AMOUNT: EUR 500 million
INSTRUMENTS:

• Emergency tax loans, with deferred taxes or paying them by instalments under an agreed schedule, with no interest applied.

• The suspension of the recovery of tax arrears on the basis of reasonableness criteria.

• Tax-payers’ exemption from paying fines and interest on late tax obligations.

• The possibility to defer the payment of the personal income tax.

• Increase the guarantee ceiling of the Agricultural Loan Guarantee Fund and INVEGA by EUR 500 million and extend the conditions for granting guarantees. To compensate between 50 % and 100 % of the actually paid interest amount for small and medium-sized enterprises.

• Make it possible for the business to defer charges for electricity and natural gas to be paid to UAB Ignitis or pay them by installments.

• Recommendation to exempt tax payers from commercial real estate and land taxes.

• Recommendation that municipalities should be given a possibility to defer public utility payments and payments for heat energy or pay them by installments.

OBJECTIVE: Boosting the economy
AMOUNT: EUR 1 billion
INSTRUMENTS:

• To accelerate investment programmes by accelerating payments and increasing the intensity of funding available.

• To reallocate EU investment funds for the areas of health, employment and business.

• To speed up the use of state budget funds for current expenses.

• To make full use of the Climate Change Programme and the Road Maintenance and Development Programme and to speed up the renovation of multi-apartment buildings.

• To introduce an additional limit on state guarantees in order to create or supplement existing financial instruments, with the primary risk borne by the State.

• To enable municipalities to implement investment projects by extending the borrowing targets and ensuring rapid liquidity assistance.

• To establish a COVID-19 Impact Mitigation Fund for donations from legal and natural persons.
COVID-19 Impact Mitigation Fund account No LT 56 1010 0000 0853 2407

OBJECTIVE: Boosting the economy
AMOUNT: EUR 2.5 billion
INSTRUMENTS:

To recommend that the Bank of Lithuania should take measures to increase banks’ lending potential by EUR 2.5 billion:

1) the reduction of capital adequacy requirements for credit institutions
2) the reduction of liquidity reserves
3) the reduction of other supervisory measures

The EUR 1 billion incentive package for the economy will consist of EUR 500 million of additional investment and EUR 500 million of additional guarantees. Read more here.

Guidance from the State Food and Veterinary Service to food handling businesses on how to protect from the virus

What to do if my business is experiencing difficulties with regard to COVID-19?
The possibility of full tax deferral: contact the State Tax Inspectorate (VMI) or SODRA.
Exemption from fines, interest on late payments and interest: contact SODRA
Possibility to borrow for circulation: contact Invega

Force majeure certificates

Businesses facing difficulties caused by corona virus-related circumstances may apply to the territorial chambers of commerce, industry and crafts for the issue of certificates attesting force majeure circumstances. Such certificates may be issued by the Chambers of Commerce, Industry and Crafts of Vilnius, Kaunas, Klaipėda, Šiauliai and Panevėžys.

Certificates for force majeure circumstances will be issued within the shortest possible time without waiting for the expiry of the deadline of 20 days. Please note that the certificates are not issued automatically simply because of a declared emergency situation. The Chambers will assesses each case individually. More detailed information on force majeure certificates issue by the Chambers is available here.

A detailed description of the receipt procedure of the force majeure certificate is available at: https://e-seimas.lrs.lt/portal/legalAct/lt/TAD/313c181039f911e598499e1e1ba6e454?jfwid=a82o5capk

Regarding the EU investment

The Ministry of the Economic and Innovation, together with the Lithuanian Business Support Agency (LVPA), have foreseen that due to coronavirus-related risk, adequate and flexible action will be ensured for businesses and the economy in case the coronavirus prevents EU project promoters from taking part in planned major events abroad or in case the required equipment is not produced and delivered to the business in time. Each project of enterprises will be decided on a case-by-case basis and the project activities will be extended. EU investment agencies will ensure continuous consulting, informing and online training of customers.

The consequences of  COVID-19 for individual projects implemented under the EU investment instruments can be treated as equivalent to a force majeure case, where contractual obligations cannot be fulfilled due to circumstances the occurrence of which cannot be controlled and reasonably foreseen at the time of the conclusion of contracts and it is not possible to prevent the occurrence of those circumstances or their consequences. However, the circumstances that will make it impossible to fulfil the contractual obligations are temporary. The parties should be released from liability only for a period which is reasonable having regard to the impact of the circumstances on the performance of the contract.
For more information, please visit the LVPA website at: http://lvpa.lt/en/news/the-schedule-of-calls-for-proposals-for-eu-funding-instruments-has-been-updated-1094

Regarding public procurement relating to the postponement of the date of an event

Given due consideration of the current situation in the country,  the contracting authorities may initiate a modification of the procurement contract, for example as regards the postponement of the date of an event. Such a contract modification may be carried out in compliance with the Law on Public Procurement which provides for a possibility for contracting authorities to modify contracts where such a need arises from circumstances which could not have been foreseen by a reasonable and circumspect contracting authority and where the modification does not substantially change the nature of the contract and the value of the modification does not exceed 50 % of the value of the contract.
Extended guidance on the execution, modification and/or termination of public sales contracts by the Public Procurement Office.

Last updated: 09-09-2020