Financial and business news from Bulgaria

EC approves €88 million to support BG small businesses affected by COVID

The European Commission has approved a scheme worth €88 million (around BGN 173 million) to support Bulgarian micro-enterprises and small businesses in the context of the coronavirus pandemic.
The scheme was approved under the Temporary State Aid Framework adopted by the Commission on 19 March 2020 and amended on 3 April 2020 and 8 May 2020.

Support measures under the scheme will be co-financed to a large extent by the European Regional Development Fund (EUR 75 million). The support will take the form of grants, the EC said.

The aim of the scheme is to meet the liquidity needs of micro-enterprises and small enterprises, including self-employed persons, and to help them continue their activities during the pandemic and beyond. The scheme will be available to companies operating in different sectors, excluding agriculture, fisheries, aquaculture and forestry.

Approximately 17,300 micro and small businesses will benefit from this support.

The Commission finds that the Bulgarian scheme fulfils the conditions set out in the Temporary Framework. It concluded that this measure was necessary, appropriate and proportionate to overcome serious difficulties in the economy of a Member State, in accordance with Article 107 (3) (b) TFEU and with the conditions set out in the Temporary Framework. On this basis, the Commission approved the measures under EU state aid rules.