Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.
Factsheet for measure AT-2020-38/1642 – Updated – measures in Austria
|Country||Austria , applies nationwide|
|Time period||Temporary, 16 September 2020 – 30 September 2022|
|Type||Legislations or other statutory regulations|
Supporting businesses to stay afloat
– Direct subsidies (full or partial)
|Author||Bernadette Allinger (Forba) and Eurofound|
|Measure added||02 January 2021 (updated 17 July 2023)|
The measure of loss compensation is an alternative ("second pillar") to phase II of the fixed cost subsidy see case 474 in the COVID-19 EU PolicyWatch database , which was implemented around three weeks earlier, with a much higher upper limit of funding.
A company can choose whether it applies for the fixed cost subsidy "800,000" (phase II) for which the maximum amount of subsidy lies at €800,000 or whether it applies for the loss compensation, with a maximum amount of €3 million. A combination of the two variants is not possible, but a singular switch (from fixed cost subsidy II to compensation loss) is allowed.
The background to this two-pillar strategy is that the Austrian government had to wait for the European Commission's approval of the measure (under the State aid Temporary Framework), which was provided on 20 November 2020.
The loss compensation is a subsidy which replaces up to 70% of losses for large and medium-sized companies and up to 90% of the losses for small and micro companies (with up to 49 employees) for losses that occur between 16 September 2020 and 30 June 2021. The prerequisite for application is a loss of sales of at least 30%, caused by the COVID-19 crisis. The losses for future periods can either be forecast in advance, or replaced afterwards.
The compensation is granted in two tranches for up to ten observation periods (the first observation period being 16 to 30 September 2020, and the other observation periods correspond to the following calendar months). Generally, the observation periods must be consecutive; a time gap is only permitted if no application is made for the observation periods November and/or December 2020 because a lockdown revenue replacement has been claimed for that time period (lockdown).
The first tranche (comprising 70% of the total subsidy) can be applied for from 16 December 2020 until 30 June 2020, the second tranche (comprising the rest, i.e. 30%) is to be applied for between 1 July and 31 December 2021.
The application must be submitted by a tax advisor, auditor or accountant; if the applying company expects a compensation of up to €36,000, the expenses for such a professional up to €1,000 can be offset in order to increase the loss (compensation).
The basis for the assessment of the loss compensation is the difference between the income and the (directly or indirectly) related expenses in the respective time period(s) under review.
By 16 December 2021, €2.935 billion in fixed cost subsidies and loss compensation have been paid to 140,152 companies.
At the end of 2021, €650 million alone for the loss compensation was paid by the state.
According to information from February 2023, in total €1.451 billion have been paid to companies.
|Does not apply to workers||Applies to all businesses||Does not apply to citizens|
Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:
|Trade unions||Employers' organisations|
|Role||No involvement as case not in social partner domain||Agreed (outcome) incl. social partner initiative|
|Form||Not applicable||Any other form of consultation, institutionalised (as stable working groups or committees) or informal|
Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:
The Federal Economic Chamber (WKO) negotiated with the federal government on this measure.
The WKO showed strong contentment with the measure, especially those sectoral groups which have been hit especially hard by the COVID-19 crisis.
Eurofound (2021), New compensation scheme for losses introduced as alternative to fixed cost subsidy for companies, measure AT-2020-38/1642 (measures in Austria), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin, https://static.eurofound.europa.eu/covid19db/cases/AT-2020-38_1642.html
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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.