“Due to the recent lockdown, there has been the highest number of applications so far,” says WKO General Secretary Karlheinz Kopf.
The hardship fund is intended to guarantee rapid financial support for the self-employed. It was set up in March 2020 and support from the fund can be requested until mid-March 2021.
It has now started its ninth month of funding. According to the Chamber of Commerce (WKO), the influx remains high. A brief overview: So far, 810 million euros in funding have been paid out to around 207,000 self-employed. On average, one person is funded with 1,200 euros per month. According to the WKO, the completion rate of the applications was almost 100 percent recently.
50,000 applications in a short time
For the ninth Corona month – from November 16 to December 15 – the WKO is expecting 50,000 applications in the next four days from today, Thursday. WKO general secretary Karlheinz Kopf describes the fund as “rapid acute support”, in addition to sales replacement and fixed cost subsidies. “The accuracy of the hardship fund only became apparent again in November – due to the recent lockdown, the highest number of applications has been made so far,” says Kopf.
According to an analysis report by KMU Forschung Austria from October, 57 percent of all one-person companies surveyed in Austria took advantage of economic aid due to the crisis – most (98 percent) from the hardship fund.