ECONOMY

European Council adopts SURE program for unemployment

european-council-adopts-sure-program-for-unemployment

The European Council on Tuesday adopted the support to mitigate unemployment risks in an emergency scheme, known by the acronym SURE, which provided up to 100 billion euros’ worth of loans on favorable terms to EU member-states.

“Today’s decision is an important step in the EU’s joint fight against the socio-economic consequences of the coronavirus pandemic,” the European Commission said in a statement welcoming the agreement.

Part of a 540-billion-euro recovery effort, SURE enables member-states to request help in financing sudden and severe increases in public expenditure related to national short-time work schemes and similar measures, including for the self-employed.

“These loans will help fund member-states’ short-time work schemes and similar measures, as well as some ancillary health measures at the workplace, that have been put in place to ensure workers and the self-employed continue receiving a proper income and businesses retain their staff and ensure that they can work in a safe environment. By protecting the productive capacity of our economies, SURE will also help to secure a faster and more complete recovery once the health emergency is over,” the Commission said.

Greece is hoping to tap around 1.5 billion euros from SURE to continue bolstering employment.