1. Crisis emergency fund of € 350 million to support sectors suffering economic damage as a result of the coronavirus and the measures taken by the National Security Council.
The Walloon Government has decided to grant € 5,000 per company that has been completely closed down.
The compensation is only available for micro and small enterprises, which are registered in Wallonia, are active in specific sectors (restaurants, accommodation, retail trade, travel services, events sector, personal services, carwash, etc.) and which have paid social security contributions in 2018. More details (in French) can be found via the following link. Applications could be made until 31 May 2020
Self-employed persons and undertakings who demonstrate a substantial reduction in their activities and who benefitted from the bridging credit in March and April will receive a compensation of € 2,500. Applications for this compensation could be made between 1 and 30 June 2020.
More information in French about the measures can be found here.
An additional compensation premium of € 3,500 has been announced for Walloon businesses (micro or small enterprises) that are still closed, have ceased their activities or whose activity is very limited in a number of listed affected sectors (discotheques, cinemas, fairs, theatres, holiday home rentals, catering, body care, travel agencies, etc.). This new lump-sum compensation is in addition to the € 5,000 or € 2,500 compensation previously decided on (see above).
More details can be found on the website of the Walloon government. Legislative texts are currently only available for companies that have received the compensation premium of € 5,000. They can be found here.
The application platform for this compensation is not yet available.
2. Water and electricity bills
For Walloon companies that encounter problems in paying their water bills on time, payment can be spread out upon a simple request to the Walloon Water Company (SWDE).
3. SOWALFIN, SOGEPA and SRIW will grant a general freeze on outstanding loans until the end of March 2020. This freeze may be extended until the end of April 2020.
4. SOWALFIN, SOGEPA AND SRIW are also offering other support measures (loans and guarantees) for companies in financial difficulties.
To meet the urgent cash needs of companies, SOGEPA and Wallonie Santé will offer, for example, loans for a maximum amount of € 200,000 with a deductible repayment of 1 year and a fixed interest rate of 2%.
More details on the other support measures (in French) can be found here.
5. The ‘Fédération Wallonie-Bruxelles’ has approved the launch of an emergency loan for cultural and creative enterprises. The loan would be available for a period of 6 months (possibly renewable for 6 months) for an amount of €20,000 to €100,000 with a fixed interest rate of 2%.
Companies that need cash to enable them to bounce back will also be able to take out a € 45,000 loan at a favourable rate with the support of Sowalfin. The loan will benefit from a capital allowance of up to 6 months and cannot be combined with the two compensation amounts mentioned above.
More information on the St’art loan can be found via this link.
6. Deadlines in regional procedures: the SPW Economy will ease the deadlines for companies with a commitment to the Walloon Region (e.g. in terms of a target for new jobs, a deadline for aid reimbursement, etc.).
7. The Walloon government will also grant € 115 million to support the health, social and employment sector. More details can be found here.
8. Support for sport facilities: A budget of € 734,500 will be allocated to the municipalities. They will be responsible for allocating and placing the subsidised equipment within the public and private sports facilities located on their territory. The practical modalities can be found here.
The above information is merely intended as comment on relevant issues of Belgian law and is not intended as legal advice. Before taking action or relying on the comments and the information given, please seek specific advice on the matters that are of concern to you.