A total of 111,080 companies in the tourism, leisure and culture sector have received 14,445.4 million financial support from Spain’s Government Guarantee Line, which was approved on March 17, in an effort to help self-employed and companies to recover from the damaged provoked by the Coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19).
The information is provided by ICO’ s (a state owned-bank) biweekly monitoring report, updated as of July 31, 2020, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.
“Despite the difficult time the sector is going through, these data confirm that the Government is making available to tourism companies tools that are being effective in minimizing the impact of the pandemic, tourism companies have an exclusive sub-section of 2,500 million euros included in the Impulse Plan of the tourism sector approved a few weeks ago, and which highlights the importance that the Government gives to the sector,” the Secretary of State for Tourism, Fernando Valdés pointed out in this regard.
According to ICO’s updated data, the operations of the sub-section for Tourism and related activities specific to SMEs and Self-Employed, have reached 7,637 operations and total financing of 354.6 million euros.
Among the beneficiaries of credits from Spain’s Guarantee Line are hotels, campsites, accommodation, restaurants as well as businesses dedicated to leisure and entertainment.
The reports show that Tourism and Leisure’s sector has the majority number of operations requested from ICO (144,380), together with Construction and Infrastructure (79,816); Business, Professional and Administrative Services (68,132); Consumer Goods and Retail (66,452); Capital and Industrial Goods (49,906) and Commercial Distribution of Food and Beverages (48,879).
Despite Spain’s Government financial support, the country’s tourism sector risks losing more than 40 billion euros during this summer, due to the current Coronavirus situation.
Some economists had previously predicted that by the end of the year, unemployment rates in Spain would show an increase from 14 per cent to a whopping 23 per cent.
In its effort to save the tourism sector during this summer, authorities in Spain launched two new plans/campaigns, last month, named the Operation Summer and the Safe Tourism Plan.
Besides, Spain’s local government on the Canary Islands signed an insurance policy to ensure that all passengers will have their expenses paid during their vacation if they contract the COVID-19. The Canary Islands became the first among 17 autonomous communities in Spain to make such insurance for travellers, which covers medical, quarantine and repatriation costs.
However, Spain reported 8,618 new Coronavirus cases since Friday, and a large share of European Union countries do not see Spain as a safe travel destination, even though is considered to be one of the favourite ones.
At present, 22 Schengen Area countries do not advise to travel to Spain for non-essential purposes.
Only Luxembourg, Poland, Romania, Portugal and Sweden have not advised avoiding travel to Spain due to the COVID-19 situation.