THE Balearic Island business community has called for urgent measures to stave off an economic catastrophe in the archipelago following the government’s extension of the State of Alarm.
The President of the CAEB Confederation of Balearic Business Associations Carmen Planas said while she had confidence that the continuation of the lockdown until April 26 would help to speed up an end to the coronavirus health crisis and protect public health and safety, she also warned of the urgency of adopting new fiscal measures and assistance for companies to prevent the health emergency’s hit to the economy from being even worse.
“The employment figures for March are just an advance on the impact it is having on our economy. It is essential to agree measures to mitigate confinement and reinforce businesses to ensure their survival and that of jobs,” Planas commented on social media.
The CAEB president insisted the suspension of the payment of taxes like VAT and income tax and Social Security contributions is necessary “to avoid economic disaster.”
She also said that it is “unavoidable” that company liquidity mechanisms and the processing of ERTE temporary suspensions of job contracts or reductions in employee working hours will accelerate, as well as an increase in the volume of government-approved guarantees.
“At this time in the Balearics many businesses and thousands of workers are experiencing a worrying situation after weeks without income, and are still waiting for financing which is not flowing at the desired speed, and however, they continue having to face punctual payment of taxes to the different administrations, as well as the corresponding insurance,” Planas pointed out.
It would, she argued, be a mistake for the government to allow “facing the health crisis to lead to economic collapse, because this would only cause the destruction of the productive system and of thousands of jobs.”
The CAEB president wants to see a gradual lifting of the confinement restrictions to “reactivate the economy,” backing the “restart as soon as possible of activities in which the health of workers can be guaranteed.”
At the same time, Planas believes the national administration must draw up a specific economic reactivation plan for the Balearics “given the special impact this crisis is already having on our community.”