The European Commission has loaned Cyprus €124 million under the Support to mitigate Unemployment Risks in an Emergency (SURE) Programme, the Commission said in a press release on Tuesday.
The funds are intended as emergency support for businesses and employment, the press release noted. The SURE funds are the result of bonds issued by the EU Commission on the international credit market — the first time the EU Commission has ever issued debt. Member States will have to repay these loans over time, thereby financing the repayment to creditors.
“These SURE loans will assist Member States in addressing sudden increases in public expenditure to preserve employment following the coronavirus pandemic. Specifically, they will help Member States cover the costs directly related to the financing of national short-time work schemes, and other similar measures that they have put in place as a response to the coronavirus pandemic, including for the self-employed. Today’s disbursements follow the issuance of the seventh social bond under the EU SURE instrument, which attracted a considerable interest by investors amid challenging market conditions in recent days.
The SURE programme has a total of €100 billion to pay out until 2022.
In total, the European Commission has on Tuesday disbursed €14.137 billion to 12 EU Member States in the seventh instalment of financial support under the SURE instrument. As part of today’s operations, Belgium has received €2 billion, Bulgaria €511 million, Cyprus €124 million, Greece €2.54 billion, Spain €3.37 billion, Italy €751 million, Lithuania €355 million, Latvia €113 million, Malta €177 million, Poland €1.56 billion, Portugal €2.41 billion and Estonia €230 million. This is the first time that Bulgaria and Estonia are receiving funding under the instrument. The other ten EU countries have already benefitted from loans under SURE.
Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni, Commissioner for Economy, said: “One year after the Council adopted the SURE instrument, we have already disbursed 90 per cent of available support: nearly €90 billion. In addition to helping European workers and firms to navigate this unprecedented crisis, SURE has also saved Member States €5.8 billion with respect to market funding rates.”