ATHENS – While apartment renters and homeowners struggling to make payments during the COVID-19 pandemic must pay the full amount, more than 200,000 businesses will get a two-month 80 percent rent cut..
Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis made the announcement to Parliament during a second lockdown aimed at slowing the spread of the Coronavirus that will see non-essential businesses staying shut until at least Jan. 7, 2021.
That would be a two-month closing after they were shut down for 10 weeks beginning in March under a first lockdown that saved lives and held down the number of cases of the virus.
The break will apply to the hardest-hit businesses in food service, bars, clubs, retail stores, gyms and even those still allowed to operate over the holidays under the so-called “click and collect” that lets people order online and pick up on premises.
The rent deduction will apply only for January and February so far, the premier said, as it’s unclear whether the lockdown will continue if the pandemic isn’t brought under control.
The rent was also slashed by 60 percent for December as the stores are losing their most critical revenue period, the landlords getting back from the state 60 percent of the rent they would have gotten.
A Finance Ministry official told Kathimerini the government is examining some adjustments to rule out enterprises that are showing an increase in their turnover even though they are shut temporarily, unclear how that would work.
For workers at the companies concerned, there will be no increase in their rental discount, with sources saying the 40 percent cut will continue to apply – without ruling out a small increase to that discount rate, the paper said.