General national economic measures
*small business relief or other financial support,
*interest free crisis loans,
*income support for employees,
*income support for freelance workers,
* business rates payment holiday,
*employer social security payment holiday,
*loan repayment holiday,
*mortgage payment holiday
Also: VAT returns to companies will happen faster.
- The Government increased the maximum total value of guarantees that can be extended for loans to local SMEs. The guarantee covers 90% of the loan value, for loans up to RON 1 million (around €200,000), and 80% for those over RON 1 million. (more info here)
-VAT refund, during March, for all settled settlements and for which up-to-date reimbursement decisions have been issued; implementation of a new VAT reimbursement mechanism, aimed at speedily settling the payments (started on April 1), 2020; suspension of fiscal control actions (tax inspections, anti-fraud controls), except for the checks that can be carried out remotely, as well as cases of tax evasion, where there are indications in this regard. (more info here)
-For technical unemployment, in case of temporary interruption of the activity, for the period of suspension of the employment contract at the initiative of the employer the allowance that the employees benefit will be borne by the unemployment insurance budget. The level of the allowance will be at least 75% of the basic salary corresponding to the job occupied paid from the salary fund, but not more than 75% of the gross average wage. (more info here)
-On 1st July, the Romanian government unveiled an €1.16bn economic recovery plan focused on SMEs. (see here)
-A new programme called IMM Invest that provides SMEs from most hit sectors with grants. It's now off to its second round of grants: a 2.000 euros microgrant for micro companies and NGOs with no employees (on a first come-first served basis), a capacity building grant of 2.000 – 150.000 euros for SMEs (amount to be received is decided depending on the annual revenue) and an investment grant of 50.000-200.000 euros for SMEs (on a project basis). The total for the microgrants is 100.000.000 euros for microgrants, 350.000.000 euros for capacity building and 550.000.000 euros for the investment grants.
National measures specific to the music sector or to culture in general
The music sector can benefit from the above-mentioned general measures.
For people (artists) whose exclusive revenue stream is coming from royalties - they get an indemnity of 75% from the average medium salary, before taxes (taxes apply) during the state of emergency period. This refers to freelance professionals in any cultural domain (musicians, actors etc). This was initially implemented for March & April but was prolonged until June 2021.
New support measure for culture (music, theatre, bookstores/publishers, art galleries) is currently being negotiated (estimated total amount:100m euros).
Measures taken by local collecting society organisations
CREDIRAM, the Romanian performers’ association is lobbying the European commission to set up a solidarity fund for performers thorugh AEPO-ARTIS and the #saveEUculture campaign: http://credidam.ro/wp/credidam-sustine-campania-saveeuculture/
Other music funds available
The National Cultural Fund - they have 3 calls/year. Funds are secured for this year. Most recent call for application ended 30 March. A few private initiatives have launched calls for small projects in order to address the total lack of revenue for artists during this period. Ministry of Culture has opened a call for projects called Acces Online 2020 for cultural projects that can only be presented/promoted online. All money for salaries and indemnification from the state came on April 15.
Support from online services
No specific support for Romania so far. For more initiatives by online platforms, click here.
Support from national radio and other media
National radio has increased local music quota only on one of its channels - Radio Romania Cultural which is, actually, one of the if not the one with the lesser audience of all its channels.
Social media campaign to promote music during the crisis
There has been an initiative started by a few indie labels and supported by the Ministry of Culture in order to increase local music quota on radios. So far only one radio station has done it.
Local programmes supported by EU funds covering music
None so far.
Business and other expected losses
No local impact assessments done so far, there's little data about the music sector even before the crisis. There are approximately 15000 artists across different performing arts sectors (music, acting, dance). All are impacted.
As per the members list from their neighbouring rights collecting society (CREDIDAM), 169 record companies (majors and independents) as per their neighbouring rights collecting society (UPFR), around 2000 concert/festival promoters and 1500 venues as per one of the biggest ticketing companies in Romania (iabilet.ro), which are all impacted by the crisis.
The live sector was frozen from March 11 to June 1st, which had an impact on the whole value chain.
The local collecting society organisation estimates a 50% decrease in public performance collection compared to 2019. For record companies, revenues are down 25-30.
The recovery should not be felt before 2022.
For more info:
INDIERO - Romanian association of independent record labels - https://www.facebook.com/indieromania/