The federal government has agreed on a new rescue package. Solo self-employed also benefit. Nevertheless, there is still criticism. From Felix Petruschke
The relationship between Federal Minister of Economics Peter Altmaier and Federal Minister of Finance Olaf Scholz is now very cold. The reason is a week-long dispute about the introduction of a fictitious entrepreneur wage for the self-employed. Altmaier wants him, Scholz blocks. Last Friday, the two corona crisis managers were able to at least agree on a compromise.
Solo self-employed are to receive a one-off grant of up to 5000 euros for the period from December to the end of June 2021. This so-called restart aid is part of a new Corona aid package, Bridging Aid III, which is to apply from January 1, 2021. The grant is intended in particular to help self-employed individuals, for example from the culture and events industry, who have hardly any operating costs and have therefore mostly missed out on previous assistance.
For the approximately 2.3 million self-employed individuals, the prerequisite for receiving the restart aid is that their sales have fallen by more than 50 percent between December 2020 and June 2021 compared to a seven-month reference sales in 2019. According to the Federal Ministry of Economics, details on how to apply should follow in the next few weeks. The payment of the grants could start at the end of January.
“Disappointed and bitter”
The new aid package was hardly announced when it was already criticized. Andreas Lutz, Chairman of the Board of the Association of Founders and Self-Employed Germany, explains to € uro am Sonntag: “The restart aid is far too low, it comes too late and once again ignores the reality of our lives.”
Above all, many members are “disappointed and bitter” about the amount of the grant. To justify this, Lutz calculates that the maximum amount of 5000 euros spread over seven months corresponds to just 714 euros a month. For those who have fallen through the grid of Corona aid since March, this amount is reduced to 313 euros. For comparison: The short-time work allowance for employees can be up to 3755 euros – and will be paid until the end of 2021.
Another point of criticism: some federal states, such as Baden-Württemberg and Thuringia, have been increasing federal aid for a long time. Solo self-employed there receive a monthly allowance of up to 1180 euros. In other federal states there were no such offers of help. So who is helped and how is a question of where you live.
Despite these injustices, Lutz tries to be confident: At least the restart aid is the first measure since the beginning of the Corona crisis, which is probably actually going to all those affected. After all.