The Executive Council has approved measures to mitigate the effects of the coronavirus pandemic across all areas of Catalan society.
Measures related to the health system
The Catalan Ministry of Health is finalising arrangements to make compensation payments to health professionals. A plan to support the primary care system will also be launched. The initial investment will be €4.5m, and 436 professionals will be hired in the coming months.
During the pandemic, 3,527 professionals were hired from outside the health system. A commitment has also been made to hire around half of the residents who worked through to the end of May.
Measures to provide liquidity to SMEs and self-employed entrepreneurs
The Catalan government has made more than €1bn available through the Catalan Finance Institute (ICF) to provide liquidity to SMEs and self-employed entrepreneurs affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.
A line of loans, fully financed by ERDF funds, has also been launched to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on companies and help ensure the continuity of economic activity during and after Covid-19 crisis.
Measures for the transport and logistics sector
The action plan for the transport and logistics sector, which will be funded with nearly €7.3 for 2020–21, sets out green agenda improvement and adaptation actions that cover the entire logistics and freight transport sector.
Measures to support the car industry and mobility
Measures in this area include financial support for market research and business development, implementation of new digital technologies in companies to boost their competitiveness, and support for suppliers – to diversify their products or business, compensate for declines in the production of certain models, and help maintain jobs.
Measures aimed at the renewable energy sector
€113m has been allocated to reactivate sectors related to renewable energy and energy efficiency and launch strategies aimed at reducing energy costs in productive sectors. The measures, which will be implemented through the Catalan Energy Institute (ICAEN), aim to ensure that the recovery of these economic actors supports the transition to a new energy model that is cleaner and more sustainable, distributed and democratic.
Measures to support the educational leisure sector
Under the plan to support the educational leisure sector, €11m will be invested this year, almost double the amount envisaged before the onset of the health and social crisis. The plan includes €4.65m in funding to ensure that up to 40,000 children and teens from families that are in a situation of vulnerability or have been economically affected by Covid-19 are able to participate in recreational activities.
Measures to support professionals in the culture sector
The €5m in funding allocated for these measures is aimed at maintaining the activity of professionals working in the arts and culture sector.
Measures to support digitisation of schools
The digitisation of the educational environment – particularly in relation to the adoption of online work environments, data privacy and cybersecurity, and education in technoculture – is a key issue on the current educational agenda.
Measures to support social projects
€8.7m has been allocated to projects carried out in 2020, in addition to €432m in funding provided under the 2019–22 call for proposals. The aim is to ensure the viability of projects run by non-profit organisations that provide support to people and address the social consequences of the health crisis. Funding will go to initiatives that in 2020 have provided care and support for the elderly, children and teens, families, and people who are dependent on others or have disabilities.
Measures to support youth employment
A programme with funding of over €6m for 2020–21 has been approved to promote self-employment among youth aged 18 to 29. The aim is to ensure a minimum income for self-employed workers at the start of their economic activity.
Measures to support people with disabilities and those with mental illness
€74.6m has been allocated for the labour market integration of people with physical or intellectual disabilities and those suffering from mental illness. These measures are expected to benefit around 12,300 people with disabilities and over 1,200 professionals whose work involves providing support for these groups.
Most of this funding (€65.3m) will go to special work centres, where it will benefit approximately 10,000 workers with disabilities and 1,100 support staff.