After the Prime Minister Andrej Plenković and his associates presented measures in the fight against coronavirus, representatives of HUP, the National Association of Caterers, the Association of Caterers Zagreb and the Association of Entrepreneurs addressed the public. How it transmits Index.hr proposals for two packages of compensatory measures were presented at the press conference.
They participated in the conference Damir Zorić, General Manager of HUP, Hrvoje Bujas, President of UGP, Marin Medak, President of the National Association of Caterers, Franz Letica, President of the Association of Caterers Zagreb at HOK and Drazen Boban, President of the Association of Catering Activities of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce.
The first model compensation is of a longer-term nature and is based on the following measures:
- reduction of VAT to 5% for a period of three years and long-term to 13% for all caterers
- continued Support for the preservation of jobs until April 2021 - HRK 4000 with the write-off of related taxes and contributions (until May 1.5.2021, XNUMX)
- compensation of 10 euros per square meter of space for the cost of rent
- Covid lending with state aid to ensure liquidity (HAMAG BICRO liquidity loans for three or five years with additional - targeted guarantees and a moratorium on credit obligations for entrepreneurs in lockdown).
Another model compensation:
- insurance of income to entrepreneurs themselves, not only for workers and their salaries - 50% from the same period last year as a direct grant from which workers are paid with exemption from contributions
- exemption from all fixed obligations during the lockdown at all levels of government (rents, utilities, utilities - garbage collection, water charges, monument rent…)
- VAT reduction - a permanent topic in the context of the possibility of opening space for new reserves when the business is restarted and with the aim of competitiveness (harmonization of rates with EU countries that have introduced VAT reduction as one of the measures due to the Covid crisis)
- exemption from parafiscal charges - as a special cost that additionally burdens employers.
"With either of these two models presented, we would avoid the black scenario that certainly awaits us if the Government does not show understanding for this crisis situation." - said the caterers.
Marin Medak, who made proposals to the assembled journalists, added that reducing VAT to 5% would make a difference of 1,4 billion a year, while caterers have about a billion euros invested in their businesses.
"If only half of them fail, it is worth half a billion euros. So almost 4 billion is the doom that will happen. Does the Government now want a direct effect of losing four billion kuna completely so that something can be expected from VAT in the future. We must not forget that in Croatia about 98% of restaurants are owned by Croats. If they hit us in this situation, corporations will simply come and take over the market and we will have a situation like we have with retail chains. ” - said Medak.
Hrvoje Bujas said that this whole story could take up to six months and that the entire private sector expects adequate measures:
"Either you gentlemen in the Government will come out with new adequate measures tomorrow, or unfortunately the number of unemployed and the general crisis that is just around the corner will continue. We expect adequate measures tomorrow, and measures to preserve jobs are not enough. We expect measures that will include all those who have a drop in traffic of more than 50% and all those who are unreasonably closed. The private sector has said a lot. And we want to preserve our health and we want to have the luxury of preserving our health and our families. We don’t want to be on a begging stick and on social. Please pay adequately and compensate so that we can welcome the next season with any optimism. ” - Bujas emphasized.
Franz Letica considers that the first model, ie the reduction of VAT to 5% for a period of three years, is correct and would make it much more liquid in the months after Covid. He is also of the opinion that the compensation for jobs must be continued until the end of 2021.
Drazen Boban he stressed that this is an ungrateful situation for caterers who will not survive because they are on the verge of collapse. It is unsustainable if adequate measures are not taken as soon as possible.
Damir Zorić he is of the opinion that the demands made at the press conference are rational and are considering how to take a step forward after Covid.
"We are sorry that the compensatory measures were not announced at the same time. With the arguments we have said, we will be able to demand compensatory measures for the closure effect. Part of the health of the nation includes the financial health of economic entities, family businesses. After a breakdown, you can imagine what the mental health of these families will look like. Rational people should not be explained why compensatory measures should be implemented. ” - said Zoric.
Tomorrow caterers and entrepreneurs have a meeting in government. Bujas says the meeting was supposed to be yesterday and added:
"It was necessary to go with clearer and more adequate measures and together with all associations make the best possible package given the funds coming from the European Union. While some had nice salaries worked or not, others are failing. Our representatives will come to the meeting, we hope to come out with a smile on their face. I expect a message that we are not left stranded. "