Health workers to receive Easter bonus; banks to defer loan payments


Presenting a new batch of economic measures to limit the impact of the coronavirus outbreak on businesses and tax payers, Finance Minister Christos Staikouras on Friday said employees in the wider national healthcare system who are in the frontline of the fight against the epidemic will be paid the Easter bonus – a benefit abolished in the public sector during the economic crisis.

The measure will affect 108,000 workers in hospitals, the EKAB ambulance service, the the country's National Public Health Organisation (EODY) and civil protection authorities, he said.

He also said businesses will be allowed to postpone the payment of the same bonus to their employees until the summer.

Staikouras also said that banks and loan managers will support individual borrowers by offering a suspension in debt payments to all individuals with loans that are being serviced and a three-month suspension of debt payments for employees that receive an 800-euro benefit.

The finance minister said that a total of 1.4 million people in the private sector and the self-employed will receive the benefit, saying this measure will cost 2 billion euros.