COVID-19— Review of State-Sponsored Help for European Companies

13 November 2020
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For more information regarding the coronavirus, please visit our Coronavirus Resource Center.

Key takeaways:
  • Governments in Europe are launching significant measures – ranging from tax forbearance to access to finance and grants – to stem the negative economic effects of COVID 19;
  • Most of these measures are open to any commercial undertaking operating (and/or employing workers) in the relevant country.

Countries across Europe are experiencing a significant surge in rates of infection, with gradual increases in daily death rates giving credence to fears of a second spike. To combat this rise, many governments have instituted a number of public health measures, signalling a potential reimposition of lockdowns. This complicates the road to recovery for commercial undertakings trying to deal with the economic downturn whilst adapting to the “new normal” of life with COVID-19. It is clear that this is a perilous time for businesses operating across Europe.

Governments across Europe have indicated that the unprecedented State-sponsored packages currently in place will continue and be supplemented to aid businesses. For many businesses, quantifying the long-term economic impact of COVID-19 will take time. However, the depth and scale of the economic shock caused by the pandemic on economies across Europe is becoming clearer with many countries across the continent on the brink of deep recessions.

The vast majority of existing measures are open to any company with domestic employees and impose relatively few restrictions based on the size or nationality of the ultimate beneficial owner. This means that help is on hand for multinational companies or PE-owned portfolio companies with operations in Europe. The measures are heterogeneous in nature, ranging from tax forbearance to State-subsidised temporary staff layoffs.

The procedures for applying for and receiving the different reliefs vary, and we can help guide you through them.