The GRTU holds successful Gozo meeting on MicroInvest

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The GRTU holds successful Gozo meeting on MicroInvestThe GRTU said that it recently held a very successful information session for its members based in Gozo on MicroInvest, the tax credit scheme launched by Malta Enterprise for the benefit of small businesses (less than 9 full-time employees as at 10th November 2009) and self employed.

The scheme is being offered for businesses to innovate, expand, develop and invest. The main benefit is that through these investments in the betterment of their businesses they would be able to deduct as much as €25,000 from their tax, which can be added up till 2013, and therefore over a period and not within 1 year. Enterprises based in Malta are given a 40% tax credit while enterprises based in Gozo are entitled to 60% of the total investment however the €25,000 capping is maintained. This is in line with Government’s strategy to give an extra hand to Gozo who suffers more from the island’s handicaps.

To be eligible businesses have to have their activity registered with the VAT Department and in possession of the required licences. They must also not be defaulting on VAT, Income Tax, Social Security and rent due to Government. Costs applied for under this scheme have to be incurred between Jan 2010 and Dec 2011. The costs covered are:

• Furbishing and upgrading of business premises for improved operations

• Machinery or technologies to improve operations, save or generate energy

• Cost of one commercial vehicle as long as such vehicle is involved in the transport of goods as specified in the guidelines

• Investments which enable compliance with regulations, including Health and Safety, Environment Directives and Physical Access

• Wage costs for new jobs created and/or apprenticeships taken, as long as these constitute a net increase in total working hrs Applications are made AFTER the investment is made. There is an official application that should be completed electronically and sent/delivered until 31st March 2012.

Opening remarks were delivered by Jason Azzopardi, Parliamentary Secretary for Small Businesses and Lands, who explained Government’s commitment to helping businesses especially the smaller ones. He continued saying that this is one of a number of schemes Government will be employing with direct aid to businesses.

Vincent Farrugia, GRTU’s Director General also gave his opening remarks saying that this is a scheme that was mentioned in the budget and one of the many schemes and proposals made by GRTU to Government for Budget 2010. He went on to say that as Dr Azzopardi pointed out there are still a number of schemes, the majority in fact, which have still not been launched. He explained the importance of the schemes we are still awaiting for especially their timely implementation.”There is the Micro Credit Scheme and the Electricity Support Fund. These schemes would provide essential support to enterprises especially in these difficult times. Unfortunately however, the late launch will make the schemes irrelevant and ineffective, that is why we call for an urgent launch. We have no use for an umbrella on a sunny day, we need it today while it is still pouring.”

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