Chilean Prez presents bill to protect independent workers

Santiago, April 30 (IANS) Chilean President Sebastian Pinera presented a bill that aims to protect 1.2 million independent workers in the country amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This insurance will be about solidarity and will protect with greater intensity the lowest-income workers and those who have had the greatest decreases in their income,” Xinhua news agency quoted the President as saying on Wednesday.

The insurance will aid workers who have issued receipts in at least four of the last 12 months or in at least eight of the last 24 months, and the amount received will be calculated based on the decrease in the income of each beneficiary due to the health emergency.

Pinera added that when the insurance is fully operational, it will benefit around two million workers.

The proposal seeks to complement the measures already announced by the government and to generate protection for formal, informal, independent, and unemployed workers.

It also includes disbursement of emergency income for up to 4.5 million people, as well as the “COVID-19 Bond”, which has already begun payments to more than 2.7 million Chileans.

According to the government, the initiative also aims to boost credit and provide capital for 99.8 per cent of companies in Chile.

The development comes as the number of coronavirus cases in Chile has increased to 14,885, with 216 deaths.



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