Watch: 91% of wage supplement applications processed

91% of wage supplement applications have been processed and executed, Economy Minister Silvio Schembri announced in a press conference on Thursday afternoon.

Malta Enterprise Chairman Kurt Farrugia addressed the press conference giving a general account of the current situation, disclosing the number of applications received by the entity which was responsible of processing applications for certain schemes which were announced by the government as a response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Minister Schembri explained that 91% of the processed applications for wage supplements have been executed. He remarked that out of an estimated €70 million, €55 million had already been disbursed to cover the period from 9 March until 24 April. The government has extended the wage supplement scheme until the end of June.

As from Friday, the government will disburse an additional €25 million to cover May. Schembri pointed out that the government will have disbursed a total of €80 until Saturday.

During the press conference, Schembri said that this would be the last press conference in which he would give such announcements on the progress of the scheme since the process has almost been completed and most applications have been processed. He explained that the process will now become a routine process whereby those who have had their applications approved, will benefit again in May and June.

The government is expected to announce new financial measures aimed at stimulating the economy and giving incentives for new investment. Minister Schembri highlighted that the financial schemes implemented so far were aimed at retaining jobs. The schemes currently in place will eventually enter a transition phase before being slowly phased out, he said.

He noted that despite the easing of measures, the demand remained low.

Quarantine Leave

A total of 1,782 quarantine applications were received by Malta Enterprise, out of which 1,625 were processed. The quarantine leave scheme covered a total of 2,530 employees. To date, the government has disbursed a total of €885,500 in funds under this scheme.

Wage supplement scheme

Malta Enterprise received a total of 20,012 applications between March and April. 71.03% of the applications came from self-employed while 24.53% were submitted by the companies, Farrugia announced.

Speaking about the wage supplement scheme, Economy Minister Silvio Schembri remarked that the government promised that it would be in place until the end of June. He added that the country was entering a transition phase and the scheme could not be sustained forever. The government is expected to roll out new financial measures aimed at stimulating the economy.

“These measures were related to retaining jobs. Now we have to focus on stimulating the economy,” Schembri said.

A total of 93,580 employees were covered through the wage supplement scheme. Most of the employees who benefited from the wage supplement scheme hailed from Malta (95.01%).

For the March – April period, the Malta Enterprise received a total of 16,942 applications covering 60,760 employees in full time employment and 10,847 employees in part time employment which qualified under Annex A. A total of 13,156 applications were approved with the government disbursing €52.1 million in funds until 27 May. A total of 59,364 employees benefited from the full wage supplement scheme.

Malta Enterprise received 3,070 applications under the Covid-19 partial wage supplement or Annex B during March – April. Out of the total applications received, 2,647 applications were approved covering 16,273 full time employees and 1,668 part time employees. A total of €2.8 million were disbursed until 27 May.

In ten weeks, the Malta Enterprise received a total of 30,976 phone calls and issued a total of 38,343 replies to queries which reached the entity via its call centre, social media or emails. Farrugia explained that there were a total of 69,319 queries were made in relation to the different schemes processed by Malta Enterprise.

Video: Facebook / Ekonomija

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