The EU Commission disbursed over EUR 6.5 billion to nine Member States Wednesday, in the final transaction under SURE, the instrument designed to protect jobs and incomes affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. SURE is the European instrument for temporary Support to mitigate Unemployment Risks in an Emergency. It is seen as a crucial element of the EU’s comprehensive strategy to protect jobs and workers in response to the coronavirus pandemic. SURE provides financial support in the form of loans granted on favourable terms from the EU to Member States.

With today’s ninth and last payment, SURE has provided a total of €98.4 billion of financial assistance to 19 Member States. As part of today’s operations, Bulgaria has received €460 million, Cyprus €29 million, Czechia €2.5 billion, Greece €900 million, Croatia €550 million, Lithuania €142 million, Latvia €167 million, Poland €1.5 billion and Portugal €300 million. All nine Member States had already received financial support under SURE.

The disbursed loans will fund past expenditure on measures introduced to tackle the severe socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis. They will help Member States cover the costs related to the financing of national short-time work schemes and other similar measures, including for the self-employed, as well as some health-related measures. These measures helped protect employment and support income during the COVID-19 pandemic.

SURE successfully helped Member States mitigate the impact of the pandemic in 2020 and supported the rapid recovery in 2021. The Commission’s latest report on SURE shows that the instrument supported approximately 31.5 million people and 2.5 million firms in 2020, and 9 million people and over 800,000 firms in 2021. In June 2021, SURE won the European Ombudsman 2021 Award for Good Administration, in the category citizen-focused service delivery. The availability of the SURE instrument ends on 31 December 2022.

Today’s disbursements were financed by the Commission’s issuance of €6.548 billion of EU SURE social bonds last week, which were well supported by investors during this end-of-year window.

Source: EUbusiness

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