General national economic measures
*small business relief or other financial support
*income support for employees
*unemployment relief for freelance workers
The government released a €7.2 billion aid package including, income support, direct subsidies, liquidity support:
COVID-19 Wage Subsidy scheme: refunded up to 70 percent of an employee's wages - up to a level of €410.
COVID-19 Enhanced Illness Benefit (“sick pay”): a scheme to support people who can’t work in the short term because they are sick or ill.
COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment:a payment of €350 per week available to employees and the self-employed who have lost their job on (or after) March 13 due to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic.
Liquidity support for affected businesses (increased to €1 billion).
The Revenue Commission has some advice and information for tax payers and agents: here.
Additional measures announced by Central Bank of Ireland (CBI):
Three month payment moratoria. Banks will introduce three-month payment moratoria on mortgages, and personal and business loans for some business and personal customers affected by COVID-19.
Lastly, the Commission for Regulation of Utilities has issued a moratorium on disconnections of domestic customers for non-payment to the gas and electricity suppliers.
National measures specific to the music sector or to culture in general
The music sector can benefit from the the COVID-19 Wage Subsidy Package and Pandemic Unemployment Payement.
- On 16th June, the Government announced €25 million in extra supports to help the Arts and Culture sector recover from the Covid19 Emergency. The funding includes bursaries and commissions to artists and arts organisations, and resources for museums and culture workers as they prepare for the re-opening of society. This is brand new funding, coming on top of funding previously allocated to the sector. A total of €20 million will be allocated to the Arts Council bringing its allocation this year to €100 million. A further €5 million will be available for other measures, including securing the future of key cultural and museum spaces and facilities throughout Ireland, and the production of high-quality digital art and on-line performances. See more here.
Ireland’s new Live Performance Support Scheme (announced on November 2nd) aims to enable promoters, producers and venues plan to live performances in the coming months. The €5 million fund will allow commercial organisers of live performances to commence preparations immediately and productions to go ahead, with either a live audience or to share content through streaming.
Phase 4 is expected to commence on July 20th, subject to Government approval. At that point pubs, bars, hotel bars and casinos may reopen, with the number of people permitted at outdoor gatherings rising to 500, and 100 indoors.
Measures taken by local collecting society organisations
IMRO took some measures to mitigate the effect of the crisis on its members and customers, with a most frequently asked questions:
- IMRO also contributed to the creation of the Irish Music Industry COVID-19 Relief Fund (more on this below).
Other music fund available
- The Irish Music Industry COVID-19 Relief Fund to support Irish music creators has been set up by the Irish Music Rights Organisation (IMRO), the Irish Recorded Music Association (IRMA) and First Music Contact (FMC), who will administer the fund.
In addition to the financial contributions by IMRO and IRMA, Spotify is making a donation and is also matching donations made to the Irish Music Industry COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund via its Spotify COVID-19 Music Relief page, dollar-for-dollar, up to a total Spotify contribution of $10 million for the collective verified organisations worldwide.
The fund has been created to assist Irish music creators who are currently experiencing the most financial need. It is open to songwriters, composers, performers, session musicians and arrangers who are currently trying to navigate through this challenging time.
Successful applicants will receive a once-off emergency relief payment to the value of €750. Applications will be reviewed by a committee of music industry professionals from a wide spectrum of industry sectors and organisations.
More info: firstmusiccontact.com
- Culture Ireland:
(1) Culture Ireland will honour grants for cancelled and postponed events
(2) A payment to support employees and self-employed people who are unemployed or who have their hours of work reduced during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Microenterprises can access COVID-19 loans of up to €50,000 from MicroFinance Ireland. Loans are available at an interest rate of between 6.8% and 7.8%. Businesses can apply through their Local Enterprise Office or directly at microfinanceireland.ie. More info: Microfinance Ireland COVID-19 Business Loan FAQs
- Enterprise Ireland has a number of supports available to help businesses mitigate the impact of Covid-19: https://www.enterprise-ireland.com/en/about-us/services/covid-19/
- Arts Council fund: http://artscouncil.ie/Funds/Arts-Council-COVID-19-Crisis-Response-Award/
Support from online services
-Spotify is making a donation to the fund set up by IMRO, IRMA and FMC to support Irish music creators (see above under "measures taken by local collecting society organisations").
- Facebook Ireland with Culture Ireland, Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht have come together to support and present live presentations by Irish artists (in English or Irish) to ensure that the arts continue to be enjoyed online – #IrelandPerforms. Funding of €100,000 is being made available on a match funded basis by Facebook Ireland and Culture Ireland, a division of the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. All successful artists will be awarded €1,000.
For more initiatives by online services, click here.
Support from national radio and other media
None so far.
Social media campaign to promote music during the crisis
- The National Campaign for the Arts have made strides in tackling government on improving the lot of the Arts and Creative sector during and post pandemic
- NCFA – National Campaign for the Arts - calls upon Government and political parties to ensure that the arts sector is not left behind in the huge task of recovery planning for Ireland: here. This was granted on 16th June (see above).
Local programmes supported by EU funds covering music
Microfinance Ireland benefits from a guarantee funded by the European Union under the programme for Employment and Social Innovation (EaSI).
Business and other expected losses
Culture Ireland is measuring the impacts of the crisis on the sector through a questionnaire: here.
- First Music Contact is conducting regular surveys to assess losses: here.
- The Arts Council of Ireland is assessing losses from it’s 340 funded clients and a survey of Individual Artists: here.