Extraordinary excise duty cuts for natural gas, electricity and motor fuel; state-supported refinancing of loans; payment holidays and use of unemployment insurance reserves should be considered to liven up the economy, said Aivar Kokk (Isamaa), chairman of the Riigikogu Finance Committee.
Kokk said that in addition to safeguarding public health, it is important, considering the situation today, to introduce measures to prevent damage to business environment.
The MP said there are various options on the table. "Power, heating and transport are all considerable expenses for households and businesses alike. That is why we should go over excise duties on gas, electricity and motor fuel and consider rapid cuts. In order to spare people and entrepreneurs from layoffs, we should consider state refinancing of long-term loans and payment holidays. Postponing state taxes or paying them over a longer period of time helps cut costs in an unexpected situation," Kokk said.
According to Kokk, utilizing the reserves of the Unemployment Insurance Fund is another possibility, alongside support measures for companies hit hardest by the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus and the emergency situation it has caused, such as the tourism and transport sectors.
"We also need to go over state investments and projects for the coming years. If we can move them forward and launch a considerable part of them this year, it will give certain sectors the necessary means for coping," Kokk said.
"By implementing said measures, we will make sure the Estonian economy remains trustworthy and able to react. They will also help Estonian people to retain their recent standard of living during what is a difficult period. The state must be flexible here and take additional measures if needed," the MP added.
Editor: Marcus Turovski