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Spain unveils 9-bn-euro plan to tackle Ukraine fallout

Spain’s government on Saturday unveiled a nine-billion-euro ($9.5-billion) national aid plan to help the country weather the ongoing fallout of the conflict in Ukraine.

Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez unveiled the package in Madrid which comes on the heels of a six-billion-euro injection in March for a scheme worth 15 billion euros overall, or “more than one GDP percentage point”.

The government also extended other measures taken in March and set to end on June 30 by another six months till the end of the year.

Those include reducing the price of a litre of petrol by 20 euro cents.

For the second time in less than a year, it also reduced value-added tax on electricity from 10 to 5 percent, a move already announced by Sanchez earlier this week.

It decided to hand out “direct aid of 200 euros” to the self-employed and unemployed, and increase pensions and disability benefits by 15 percent.

The measures aim to help consumers deal with rising inflation, which hit 8.7 percent in May, its highest level in decades.