Agriculture and food production are priority and essential sectors. Farmers, wine-growers and horticulturalists can therefore continue to carry out all their seasonal work, sowing, preparing fields and vines and feeding their animals, while respecting the hygiene and safety measures imposed across the country. This also applies to the production of animal feed. The food production and processing chain, direct selling and food transport must remain operational in order to guarantee food security in Luxembourg and in Europe.
The package of measures to support the agricultural sector include:
• guarantee a certain liquidity to companies
Minister Schneider stressed that farmers and all professionals in the sector are an essential and essential pillar in supplying the food chain, which is vital for the entire population.
• trips to the workplace for the exercise of professional activity,
• travel to commercial entities and service providers,
• troubleshooting, dispatching, depollution (including removal of dead animals) and maintenance activities necessary for safety reasons
2. Responding to immediate liquidity needs
3. Provision of additional liquidity
• grant financial assistance of a maximum amount of €500,000 in the form of a repayable advance to cover operating costs,
• postpone the repayment of loans to better cope with cash flow difficulties,
• meet liquidity needs by early repayment of VAT credit balances below €10,000,
• automatically grant requests for the cancellation of tax advances for the first 2 quarters of 2020. This includes income tax (local authorities) and municipal business tax,
• automatically grant requests for deferral of payment (without interest) of income tax, municipal business tax and wealth tax,
• set the deadline for the submission of tax returns for legal and natural persons to 30 June 2020.
4. Extension of the time limit for the request for direct payments
5. Implementation of the jobswitch platform
In addition, the MBR Maschinenring is another important point of contact for advising and assisting farmers, wine-growers and horticulturalists who need labour in the context of self-help on the farm. The State bears part of the costs of mutual assistance, particularly in the event of illness, maternity leave or the death of the farm manager. This aid is subject to the condition that the assistance is provided through the MBR Maschinenring.
In order to speed up and facilitate the procedure for applying for partial unemployment for force majeure linked to the Covid-19 crisis, a new automated system has been put in place and allows companies to submit their request for partial unemployment via an online form on the site: http://guichet.lu
7. Abolition of the 2020 subscription on Letzshop.lu
8. More flexibility for the payment of social security contributions
Finally, the Ministry of Agriculture, in the current situation of the COVID-19 pandemic, is in permanent contact with the agricultural sector and that of agrifood processing in order to be able to react quickly in the event of disruption of the markets respectively of the functioning of the production chain.