New Development Law: Arrives with key changes

New Development Law: Arrives with key changes

The new Development Law is expected to bring a series of key changes compared to the old one, in order to make the investment environment in the country friendlier. Some of these are the pursuit of reducing bureaucracy through the full digitization of submission and approval procedures, the expansion of the fan base of investment plans that can be included and the conditional participation of statutory auditors in the implementation control process.

Forms of subsidies

The new Development law will provide the following 5 forms of subsidies:

  1. Exemption fron tax, which consists of the exemption from the payment of income tax applied on earnings befor tax, which arise under the relevant tax legislation, from all the activities of the company. The amount of the tax exemption is calculated as a percentage of the value of the investment plan costs or the value of the new mechanical and other equipment, which is acquired by leasing and constitutes an equal reserve, which is kept in a separate account in the financial their situations.
  2. Subsidy, which consists of the free provision by the State of a sum of money to cover part of the supported costs of the investment plan and is determined as a percentage of them.
  3. Leasing subsidy, which consists of the coverage by the State part of the paid installments of leasing, which is concluded for the acquisition of new mechanical and other equipment, is determined as a percentage of the value of their acquisition . The lease subsidy may not exceed 7 years and the term starts from the date of completion of the investment.
  4. Subsidizing the cost of employment created, which consists of covering by the State part of the wage costs of the new jobs created and related to the investment plan and for which no other state aid is received.
  5. Business risk financing related to the "New Business" scheme.

Schemes

Investment projects can fall into one or more of the 13 categories:

  1. Digital and technological transformation of companies: The purpose of this scheme is to strengthen all investment projects that promote digital and technological transformation, the use of technologies of "Industry 4.0" and upgrade the relevant skills of human resources.
  2. Green transition - Environmental business upgrades: It concerns the strengthening of investment projects related to activities in the circular economy and sustainable development and adopts technologies that contribute to the protection of the environment and the energy upgrading of business units.
  3. New Entrepreneurship: Young entrepreneurs who are active in specific sectors of the economy are supported and the coverage of company start-up costs, research activities and initial investment costs.
  4. Fair Transition Scheme: Investment projects implemented in the areas of the Territorial Fair Transition Plans in order to support the employment and development of the areas most affected by the transition to a climate-neutral economy.
  5. Research and applied innovation: The aim of the scheme is to strengthen all investment projects that promote research and promote the development and implementation of ideas and technologies that improve goods and services and make production more efficient.
  6. Agri-food - primary production and processing of agricultural products - fishing: Business activities of primary agricultural production, processing of agricultural products and fisheries are strengthened.
  7. Manufacturing - Supply chain: Investment projects belonging to the processing sector, excluding the processing of agricultural products for which a special regime is established, and investment projects in the supply chain sector, with the object of technological, productive, administrative and organizational upgrading, as well as innovative and extroverted development and growth, with the aim of strengthening the competitive position of companies in the domestic and international market.
  8. Business Extroversion: Incentives are provided to companies that aim to penetrate new foreign markets by exporting their products or services.
  9. Support for tourism investments: The purpose of the scheme is to provide aid to a wide range of tourism investments, mainly related to the creation, expansion, modernization of an integrated form of tourist accommodation throughout the country in order to upgrade the quality of the tourist product.
  10. Alternative forms of tourism: Aims to support tourism investments related to alternative forms of tourism and aim at utilizing and highlighting the special characteristics of the regions of the country, such as geographical, social, cultural, religious.
  11. Large investments: It concerns large investment projects in sectors of the economy with significant effects on local economies.
  12. European value chains: The aim is to strengthen all investment projects in the sectors that are European value chains, in order to achieve economies of scale, to improve the quality of products and services provided, to make supply chain coordination effective and to conditions for reinforcing extroversion are formed.
  13. 360 ° Entrepreneurship: It concerns investment projects that are subject to the development law, except for specific categories for which special schemes are established. These are initial investments and additional costs are supported for the benefit of business initiatives and the national economy.

Maximum subsidies

The total amount of subsidy per submitted investment plan may not exceed the amount of EUR 10 million, unless they fall under the exceptions of the new framework (Κεφάλαιο Θ).

The aid provided to each investment project entity, including aid to cooperating or affiliated companies, may not exceed a total of EUR 20 million for an individual company and EUR 30 million for all cooperating or affiliated companies.

These restrictions apply to investment plans, which are subject to this and for a period of 3 years from the submission of the application of the entity for inclusion of its investment plan. The amount of aid, per submitted investment plan, is taken into account approved by the affiliation decision. The excess aid amount shall be cut in proportion to the type of aid and the group of expenditure.

Beneficiaries

Beneficiaries of the subsidies granted under the schemes of the new framework are the investment entities that are established or have a branch in the Greek Territory at the time of commencement of works of the investment plan and have one of the following forms:

a. Commercial company.

b. Partnership.

c. Social Cooperative Enterprises (Koin.S.Ep.), Agricultural Cooperatives (AS), Producer Groups (OP), Urban Cooperatives, Agricultural Cooperative Partnerships (AES).

d. Companies under establishment or under merger, with the obligation to have completed the publicity procedures before the commencement of works of the investment plan.

e. Joint ventures engaged in commercial activity.

f. Public and municipal enterprises and their subsidiaries, provided that:

fi. They have not been assigned a public service.

fii. The provision of services has not been assigned exclusively to them by the state.

fiii. Their operation is not subsidized with public resources for the period of fulfillment of their long-term obligations.

Companies that are excluded

The following are excluded from aid and inclusion in the above schemes:
a. The companies for which, when submitting an investment plan application, the aid recovery process is pending against them (Deggendorf principle).
b. Troubled undertakings, as defined in Article 4.
c. Undertakings which in the 2 years prior to the submission of the aid application have:

ci. relocate the business establishment in which the initial investment for which the aid is requested will be made; or

cii. do not undertake not to do so within a period of 2 years after the completion of the initial investment for which the aid is requested, and

d. Companies that implement investment projects carried out on the initiative and on behalf of the State, based on a relevant contract for the execution of a project, concession or provision of services.

Audit with the participation of certified auditors

In order to speed up the procedures, the new framework stipulates that the audit of the implementation of the investment plans amounting more than 700,000 euros (for the certification of 50% or 65% of the physical and financial object of the investment plan or the completion and start of the production operation of the investment) is carried out by a certified auditor, who must be registered in the relevant register (ΕΜΠΕ).

Read here the law.

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