THE Spanish Government has indicated that it intends to maintain the ERTE scheme until the end of the year.

Labour Minister, Yolanda Diaz raised the possibility today of extending the ERTE scheme until the end of 2020 for the sectors where it’s most needed.

Around three million people nationwide are on ERTE, but that is currently due to expire on June 30.

Diaz told state radio broadcaster RNE: “Once the work of the intersectional commission is completed, we will have a road map to know what sectors need this measure beyond June 30.

“I hope to have this provision to extend ERTEs to sectors that need it as soon as possible.”

The Social Security Minister, Jose Luis Escriva also said that he was ‘open’ to the idea of extending the scheme.

Escriva told Antenna 3: “It seems clear that everything related to the hospitality industry, especially hotels, is going to take longer to recover.

“But we have to go into detail, focus it as much as possible so that it makes a much more efficient use of public resources.”

Half of all those that are on ERTE are from the tourism sector.

According to Diaz, the scheme has protected Spain from ‘massive’ job losses during the coronavirus crisis.

Diaz described the ERTE scheme as a ‘social shock absorber’ that has saved the jobs of more than three million workers in Spain.

The unemployment aid cost the Government €5.1 billion in April alone and when asked about its sustainability, Diaz replied that ‘what would not be sustainable’ would be leaving the unemployed without support.

This comes as thousands of people either have not received their ERTE payments or received them a month late.

Over 10 British expats have contacted the Olive Press during the past month informing us of their lack of ERTE payments and wanting to find out why the Government has only paid some and not others.

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