European Foundation
for the Improvement of
Living and Working Conditions

The tripartite EU agency providing knowledge to assist
in the development of better social, employment and
work-related policies

EU PolicyWatch

Database of national-level policy measures

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 PL-2020-14/804 – measures in Poland

Financial shield: Micro enterprises

Tarcza finansowa: mikroprzedsiębiorstwa

Country Poland , applies nationwide
Time period Temporary, 01 April 2020 – 31 July 2020
Context COVID-19
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Supporting businesses to stay afloat
– Direct subsidies (full or partial) or damage compensation
Author Jan Czarzasty (Warsaw School of Economics)
Measure added 30 April 2020 (updated 29 September 2023)

Background information

In mid-April the parliament passed into legislation another set of measures aiming to help enterprises go through the unfolding economic slowdown triggered by the COVID-19 public health crisis. The Act amending the Act on the System of Development Institutions facilitate a public support programme commonly referred to as the Financial Shield, operated by the Polish Development Fund (Polski Fundusz Rozwoju). The programme is divided into specific sub-sets of measures targeting

  1. micro,
  2. small and medium firms and
  3. large firms.

Content of measure

The programme relies on a scheme of advanced payables offered to micro firms (up to nine employees) with annual turnover of no more than €2 million. Eligible are the enterprises which: experienced decrease in sales by at least 25% experienced on a month-to-month basis after 1 February 2020 (or to the same month of the preceding year) due to COVID-19 outbreak; are not in administration or liquidation procedure; had tax residency in Poland and paid taxes for two previous fiscal years; held operations on 31 December 2019; had all social securities duly paid as of 31 December 2019.

The scale of support: total allocation of PLN 25 billion and up to PLN 324,000 per beneficiary for three years (up to 75% of the amount loaned can be annulated after 12 months).

Use of measure

Some 670,000 enterprises altogether (both micro and small and medium) can be possibly covered, according to the Polish Development Fund (Polski Fundusz Rozwoju, PFR), a public agency responible for administration of the Financial Shield.

As of mid-July, it is reported by PFR that some PLN 17 billion (approximately €3.8 billion) have been released to beneficiaries from the target group (microfirms). Altogether 321,000 enterprises (both micro and small and medium), employing about 3 million persons have received support.

No applications have been accepted after 31 July 2020.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Does not apply to workers One person or microenterprises
Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
National funds

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role No involvement No involvement
Form Not applicable Not applicable

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • No involvement
  • Main level of involvement: Unknown


BCC issued an opinion critical of the measures directed at enterprises of all sizes, assessing it as insufficient.

Views and reactions

Social partners not involved, employer organisations critical of measures as insufficient.


  • 31 March 2020: The Act of 31 March 2020 amending the Act on the System of Development Institutions (


Eurofound (2020), Financial shield: Micro enterprises, measure PL-2020-14/804 (measures in Poland), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


Eurofound publications based on EU PolicyWatch

30 January 2023


Measures to lessen the impact of the inflation and energy crisis on citizens

Governments across the EU continue to implement policies to support citizens and businesses in the face of rising food and energy prices caused by the COVID-19 crisis and intensified by the war in Ukraine. This article summarises the policy responses as reported in Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch database from January to September 2022.


12 September 2022


First responses to cushion the impact of inflation on citizens

Although the worldwide pandemic situation had already disrupted supply chains and triggered increases in energy and food prices in 2021, the situation deteriorated in 2022 with the Russian invasion of Ukraine.


12 September 2022


Policies to support EU companies affected by the war in Ukraine

This article summarises the first policy responses that governments across the EU have started to implement to support companies affected by the rising prices, and those with commercial ties to Ukraine, Russia or Belarus.


5 July 2022


Policies to support refugees from Ukraine

This article summarises the first policy responses of EU Member States, including those of the social partners and other civil society actors, enabling refugees to exercise their rights under the Temporary Protection Directive.


Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.