Impacts of COVID-19 support on companies and the economy to be extensively assessed

The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment will launch an independent assessment of the business subsidies made available to companies to address the liquidity problems they were experiencing due to the coronavirus crisis. The purpose of the assessment is to analyse the short and long-term impacts of the subsidies, and to provide information to political decision-makers for future crises. An audit on the use of business subsidies will also be conducted. The assessment will be conducted in stages during 2020–2023.

“Over the spring and summer, new business subsidies were introduced and the coverage of existing ones was expanded in a short timescale to prevent bankruptcies, unemployment and financial crisis in the context of the COVID-19 crisis. We now want to assess the impacts of the subsidies for future reference. The assessment will increase the transparency of central government activities, and it allows us to use research-based information in future decision-making,” says Ilona Lundström, Director-General of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment.

The assessment is conducted by multiple organisations, in several parts and over a longer term. Competitive tendering and independent expert organisations will be used in the implementation of subprojects.

The total amount of COVID-19 financial support provided by the central government in March–June 2020 was approximately EUR 22 billion, with market-based financing, i.e. loans (the State Pension Fund and the Bank of Finland), Finnvera’s loan guarantee authorisations, and Finnish Industry Investment’s capital investment programmes representing EUR 10.2 billion, direct subsidies EUR 10.4 billion and a reduction in pension contributions EUR 1.5 billion. Some of the assessments address all support financing, others focus on specific forms of support.

Short and long-term impacts of COVID-19 subsidies to be reviewed separately

The first stage involves assessing the short-term effects of the COVID-19 subsidies. Areas under special scrutiny include the allocation of subsidies, their ability to prevent bankruptcies, and their impact on reinvention and productivity. READ MORE >