Flanders has allocated €45 million to poverty relief in a package to help businesses and families struggling to get back on their feet as the government lifts the coronavirus lockdown.
The funds will aim to help residents and families who "do not have a strong buffer" to face the economic slowdown brought on by the pandemic, Flemish Minister-President Jan Jambon said in a press statement.
- Businesses who claimed lockdown compensation illegally must repay €10 million
- Belgian businesses (mostly) welcome measures to boost the post-lockdown economy
- Flanders expects €6,5 billion budget deficit this year
At least 730,000 people in Flanders filed for temporary unemployment in April alone, putting the usually dynamic economy of the Dutch-speaking region under strain.
"We do not want to leave anyone behind," Jambon wrote announcing the new aid package, which comes in addition to previous measures to relieve businesses, families and employees.
A total of €15 million will be released for a Covid-19 supplement which will grant all families whose incomes shrunk below €2,213 with a boost of €120 per child.
Another €15 million will be pumped into local government coffers for use in poverty-reduction policies, out of which around €1.5 million will flow into Flemish-led programs in Brussels, while €15 million more will be used to promote consumer spending via vouchers which "must be used in the local economy," the press release said.
The Brussels Times