Are you an entrepreneur?
Where can entrepreneurs and businesses get help during the coronavirus crisis?
Single entrepreneurs can apply for a loan from a bank or direct financial support from the company’s home municipality. Full-time entrepreneurs operating in Finland, engaged in economic activity on their own, can apply for support. Single entrepreneurs are entrepreneurs or self-employed individuals who do not employ paid employees, including freelancers.
Single entrepreneurs are eligible for guarantee by Finnvera, if the company is registered in the Trade Register. The Finnvera guarantee cannot be granted to entrepreneurs using income tax card only. The company must be registered in the Trade Register.
Small businesses employing 1–5 employees based on an employment contract, can apply for a loan from a bank and receive a Finnvera guarantee for it. Direct financial support (Grant for business development due to market and production disruptions caused by the coronavirus epidemic) can be applied for from the ELY centers. The ELY center funding is intended for companies to explore and tap into new business opportunities and strengthen their competence.
SMEs and midcap businesses
An SME (employing 6–250 employees based on an employment contract) and midcap businesses (employing more than 250 employees, annual turnover less than EUR 300 million) can apply for a loan from a bank and receive a Finnvera guarantee for the loan. Financing for the following sectors can be applied through Business Finland (Funding for business development in disruptive circumstances): least tourism and auxiliary tourism services, creative and performing industries and all sectors where subcontracting chains are affected.
New funding program for mid-sized companies
The Government undertakes a wide range of measures to ensure that companies can continue profitable operations after the coronavirus crisis. Direct support and loan guarantees are offered to companies. The latest measure is a funding program for mid-sized companies, to be launched by the state-owned capital investment company Tesi, Finnish Industry Investment Ltd, on 14 April 2020. The Government will allocate EUR 150 million to the program.
Entrepreneurs entitled to unemployment security due to the coronavirus epidemic
On 2 April, the Government proposed that, as a temporary measure, entrepreneurs would be entitled to labor market support on the grounds of sudden and unforeseen decline in demand due to the coronavirus epidemic. The aim is to ensure the livelihood of entrepreneurs. The act entered into force on 8 April and will remain in force until 30 June 2020.
It is possible to apply for and receive support retroactively if the conditions are met. Labour market support can be paid to entrepreneurs between 16 March and 30 June 2020. If the entrepreneur registers as a jobseeker no later than 15 April 2020, he or she is entitled to the labour market support for the time preceding this, starting on 16 March, even if he or she had not been registered as a job seeker during that time. However, support will not be paid until the conditions have been met.
What are the conditions for entrepreneurs to be entitled to labour market support?
What is required to be eligible for labour market support:
- full-time employment of the entrepreneur has ended or
- monthly income from entrepreneurial activities is less than EUR 1,089.67 per each person engaged in it as an entrepreneur.
The end of full-time work or the reduction in income should be due to the coronavirus epidemic.
Closing down the business is not a condition for being entitled to labour market support.