24th March 2020
As COVID-19 continues to spread around the world, many contracting hotspots are taking action in order to prevent and mitigate the effects of the virus. Here are some updates from India, Saudi Arabia and Slovakia, as of 31st March 2020.
India: What do you need to know?
- Due to a spike in positive cases, several states will go into lockdown, including Delhi, Noida, Gurugram, Mumbai, and Bengaluru. Overall, 75 districts across the country have been placed under travel, work and movement restrictions until March 31.
- India is not under complete lockdown yet, but severe travel restrictions have been imposed on some states, and public places have been shut. Rail and intercity bus services have been suspended throughout the country.
- Anyone breaking the rules of the lockdown, could be punished with simple imprisonment for a term that may extend up to one month or with a fine which may extend to Rs 200, or with both.
Saudi Arabia: What you need to know
- In Saudi Arabia, measures are also being taken to slow the spread of the virus. No international flight is currently allowed to land at any Saudi airport. All visitor visa applications including work and tourism visas are also not being accepted at any Saudi Embassy. While there is no time frame given for this freeze, there will be a review on 15th of April.
Government implements urgent measures to mitigate impact of coronavirus:
- As of the 20th of March 2020, the country has also announced an unprecedented 120 billion riyals stimulus package to mitigate the economic effects of the COVID-19 outbreak in the country. The stimulus will ensure the availability of immediate financial resources to businesses, as well as protect government facilities and agencies to ensure the continuity of their work against COVID-19
- In response to the threat of COVID-19, Slovakia’s new government has planned an aid package of up to 1 billion euros a month to help firms and employees hurt by the coronavirus pandemic. Slovakia has introduced the following measures:
- The government will reimburse 80% of an employee’s salary to companies who are closed by government. For each employee who remains at home, they will receive a contribution of 80% of their average salary, up to a maximum of EUR 1100 per month.
- The state will also contribute help to self-employed people and employees in firms that suffer falling revenue, with payments linked to the size of the revenue drop when compared with the same period last year:
- >20% – 180 EUR
- >40% – 300 EUR
- >60% – 420 EUR
- >80% – 540 EUR
- The state will offer firms bank guarantees of up to 500 million euros a month.
- For employees in quarantine and parents on sick leave, 55% of their gross salary will be paid during this period.
- Employers will also be allowed to postpone their contributions to state social and health systems and postpone income tax payments if they suffer a 40% drop in revenue.
- Firms can also offset accumulated losses from past years going back to 2014 against corporate income tax.
While this is the current situation regarding India and Slovakia, things are changing every day, and we encourage contractors and recruiters to pay attention to information from relevant authorities before making any decisions. Should there be any interruption to your assignment or working life – 6CATS will be here to help.
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or would like more information.