MOSCOW, May 29 (RAPSI) – Chairman of Russia’s government Mikhail Mishustin has signed a resolution putting mass media outlets on the list of the sectors of the economy most badly hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Among those eligible for the measures of support envisaged by the state for representatives of affected industries are publishers of books, newspapers, magazines, periodicals, TV and radio broadcasters, online media outlets, news agencies. Besides, the resolution concerns activities related to the printing of newspapers.

Mishustin has reminded that Russian media continue their work in spite of the infection outbreak and restrictions introduced to combat COVID-19. He believes the role of mass media in the current situation is especially important as they provide actual and true information to the people.

The measures of support mass media are eligible for include a 6-month postponement of all taxes (excluding VAT), as well as rent payments for properties owned by the state, municipalities, or individuals; interest-free loans for immediate needs and payment of wages and salaries; cheap credits at 2% for any aims; moratoriums on bankruptcy, as well as planned and surprise inspections.

In addition, representatives of small and medium-sized businesses operating in the affected industries are eligible for postponement of insurance contributions, which may be cut by two on condition the wages and salaries of the employees exceed their minimal level; restructuring of payments accrued over the postponement period.

Direct financial aid in the form of subsidies (grants) provided to SME may be spent for salaries, repayment of debts related to utility services. The amount of this type of aid makes one minimum wage per employee. Companies having technical debts as to taxes and insurance contributions may seek subsidies if their respective indebtedness is at or below 3,000 rubles (about $42 at the current exchange rate), according to the press service of the government.