Spain's nightlife, which has been hit hard by the pandemic. | Yoan Valat

Spain's nightlife sector is urging the government to extend the moratorium on having to file for bankruptcy until September 30. The Spain Nightlife employers' association says that the sector has been the hardest hit by the crisis, with 70% of establishments having been closed since the original state of alarm was declared on March 14.

Accumulated losses in the nightlife sector are put at 20,000 million euros, the employers saying that very little financial aid has so far been received. Among other things, the association wants non-refundable direct aid for a sector which employs some 200,000 people. A suspension or postponement of taxes and social security contributions is also being sought in an attempt to avoid the destruction of thousands of jobs.

The employers argue that many businesses should be in a position to open during the tourism season and to therefore be able to present business viability plans to creditors. For this reason, there is the request for an extension to the bankruptcy moratorium.

The association would ideally like a postponement of payment of tax and social security debts until the end of 2023. These demands as well as those for rent payments are said to be "strangling" businesses, meaning that bankruptcy is the only real option.

The secretary general of Spain Nightlife, Joaquim Boadas, says that it is essential that effective aid is provided and is in proportion to the impact of the restrictions. He adds that for some businesses, "the damage is irreversible, as they have already been evicted and will never be able to open again". "Each day that passes, dozens of companies disappear. This bleeding must be stopped as soon as possible."